So naturally, not having the bracing cold here, I get a bit nostalgic for the fall/winter season, and it hits particularly hard November through January. Sometimes I have surreal moments, like walking out of the baking heat into the refrigerated grocery store at the end of November and seeing garish Christmas decorations tacked to a hideous, towering fake tree, garlands of tinsel thrown willynilly across the spindly branches. Or like last night, attending a Christmas concert in a church with the pivoting shutter-windows open and the ceiling fans going full blast. The music was lovely, but, as I said, surreal. They skipped Noël Blanc because they said they hadn't learned it, but I'm of a mind to think that they just didn't have the heart for it since the high yesterday was 99°F.
Taking a small trip might help with the seasonal disconnect, even if we can't afford to go somewhere with snow; hence, we've decided to go to Reunion Island for 8 days in January. We'll visit the "Snowy Peak" most likely, but we won't find snow during the middle of the rainy season. If the crater isn't offlimits due to dangerous activity, we might get to see lava flowing. That should either take my mind off snow or make me miss it even worse. We'll see.
In the spirit of nostalgia and year's end, I thought I would do the retrospect meme:
January: I've started the new year off with a bang and have been good all week. (My first actual post is locked and it talks about setting goals. None of which I have accomplished.)
February: I was good this week! And the body listened and didn't try to sandbag me.
March: Before coming to Mayotte, I thought that the words, or concepts of, if you will, "please," "thank you," and "you're welcome" were givens in every society, as is the polite formulation of making a request. Not so, or in my dealings with the Mahorais, I have not found them to be a natural part of conversations and interactions.
April: J is really doing his best to incarnate his nickname, "Seaheart." Not content with just working on a boat, he plans on buying one with some colleagues in order get to fishing sites more easily (now, when he doesn't go out in a friend's boat, they swim to the barrier reef because spearfishing is not allowed within the lagoon).
May: Being bitten/stung by a centipede on the ankle is no fun.
Being bitten/stung by a centipede on the, um, chest, is no fun, AT ALL.
June: left my house this evening, towards sunset, holding my husband's hand and hoping to catch the perfume of a ylang-ylang in bloom. Instead, I smelled someone smoking weed. We strolled past the lively square, where music was already blaring, and through the twisting streets to the sea wall, thinking to pass a quiet moment in contemplation of the colors of a sunset spilling across lagoon and sky. Instead, we were mobbed by Mahorais children.
July: Social stuff: Friday I was supposed to perform with my fellow African dance students at an end-of-the-year school party. We were told repeatedly to be there at 3pm. So, I was there at 3pm. And no one else was.
August:I'm very glad I'm on a writing hiatus, or rather I'm happy I don't have the novel_in_90 goal hanging over my head. I'm tiiiiired, and it is good to know that I can just relax with a movie or a book or sketch pad and pencils and not worry about churning out readable prose.
September: September first. The day my writing hiatus ends and did end.
October: Mora mora is the Madagascar way of saying, "Take it easy." That's what I'm doing
with my installments about our trip. I wanted to work something up that conveyed the magic of the travels, but I'm in the middle of edits and my brain is all sensorized, pretty-prosed out. My timing is ever thus.
November: had decided that I wasn't going to do NaNo this year. Then an idea swamped me. Okay, it barely dribbled on me because I still don't know what the heck is going on with it. (*lol* and I ended up not doing NaNo)
December: (caption from a photo) Julien and neighbor kids in the street in front of our house. Any time we want to do something out front, be it sweeping the porch, checking the mail, or, in this case, trying out a new gaslight, we have a crowd of curious kiddos wanting to visit and/or help.