Monday, 3 December 2007

Navidad en Madrid [Christmas in Madrid]

Despite being very-nearly-an-Atheist (just coming to the end of The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins) I do love the idea and expression of Christmas. Having been somewhat deprived of this during the last fourteen years in the Middle East, I'm like a kid in a candy store now. When it comes to Fiestas, Madrid does not stint. Here are some pictures that I've taken around town on the last few days/nights:



This Christmas thing started a few weeks ago when I looked down into Plaza de Chueca and saw this: a couple of cherry-picker trucks and discs of coloured plexiglass.



These delightful things began working as soon as they were erected: the sun shining through them produced areas of coloured light on the ground: a white dog walking across the square could become a red or green or purple dog. Marvellous! Very gay! (If you don't live in Madrid, you probably don't know that Chueca is the gay centre of Madrid).

Wandering through town a few days ago, I happened upon this:



'Cortylandia' - El Corte Inglés enticing the parents of gazillions of kiddiewinkles to spend money they haven't got. It's magnificent. There are dozens of animatronic figures whizzing about on this, pretending to sing songs that are blasted out through a seriously big P.A. system.

Saturday last, BetterArf and I decided to meet up up at Plaza Mayor. No particular reason, just that we haven't been up there for a while. It's amazing what you can fit into this square. Right now, they've fitted in a huge Christmas Market:



You can buy Christmas trees, turf, coloured sand and bark to make your Nativity scene with, myriad plaster figures to populate it with (idolatry!), wigs, masks and all manner of weird stuff.



Sometimes you can hardly move for Living Statues in Madrid: we particularly liked this one...



An odd scene: this Santa is clearly Asian, while the guy on the left is English...make of it what you will.

5 comments:

~ Ms. Cute Pants ~ said...

Nice pics! I know what you mean tho about Dubai. It only felt like Christmas because we had family around. And although they do celebrate Christmas here in Bermuda, we still go back to Toronto to spend time with the family, since we have none here.

Seabee said...

The malls are in full swing with the Christmas stuff here too Keefie. Wafi Mall is even running a radio commercial telling us all to get over there to the Santa Grotto and suchlike. Dancing, singing five-foot polar bears and equally tall saxophone playing Santas in the aisles at Choitram, a 'winter wonderland' going up at Madinat Jumeirah...

(I'm used to hot sunny Christmases having lived in Oz for twenty-odd years, so it doesn't seem as strange to me).

dubaibilly said...

Aye, as seabee says, definitely a few christmassy bits and pieces around Dubai, Keefie. Me and Mrs Dubaibilly went camping last weekend and decided to hit the camping bit of Spinneys (as you do, to top up on gas and such like) - we bought a Christmas cake to take with us and were hard pushed to find any camping gear at all. I think it had all been removed to make way for Christmas stuff! Happy Christmas anyway mate, and don't forget, Christmas 2010 - your place!

dubaibilly said...

ps, just noticed the link, thank you!

MamaDuck said...

The Wafi always knew how to do Christmas. We always took our little fella, even long after he was a big fella.