How Christmas is celebrated in Barbados

Christmas newsletter and year in review '06 from Barbados, Caribbean

Caribbean Christmas Greetings, Year In Review '06, and New Years Eve Invitation

Love her,

out Barbados we send you our Christmas greetings and best wishes for a healthy and happy 2007 across the pond!

Again and again we are asked whether and how we and men celebrate Christmas in the Caribbean.

There is an unequivocal "YES" to this, namely ...

Also the caribbean christmas season is characterized by hectic activity:
There is hammering and painting, renovation and decoration going on everywhere.
The Caribbean Christmas is similar to the spring cleaning in Germany, in addition, every evening in Barbados more houses shine in brightly flashing, Christmas lights of Taiwanese fairy lights.
Reggae versions of well-known Christmas carols are rumbling non-stop on the radio and you can meet dark-skinned, red-caped contemporaries everywhere.
In the supermarkets, cashiers and customers trill the Christmas tunes of the public address system and the bell tower at the Garrison has been switched to "Silent Night, Holy Night" by Big Ben bells.
Even on the beach in Barbados, swimwear shines in bright seasonal red and white.

If you ask a Barbadian what he is doing for Christmas, you will often get an accurate answer that sounds like: "Törkinhäm!".
What is meant then are large family feeding orgies in which the two traditional Christmas dinners turkey and ham, ie "Turkey and Ham", are served.
The roasts are washed down with a liqueur made from Sorrel's dock blossom, which is seasoned with cinnamon stars and cloves and which is only available in Barbados at Christmas time.
We toast you and wish you a peaceful, harmonious Christmas season!
The short warm Caribbean winter evenings at Christmas time and the approaching New Year are also good reasons for one
Review of the year 06:
The year 2006, which is about to expire, was marked internally and externally by ups and downs ...

At On New Year's Eve '05 we had ushered in the new year in an old plantation house hidden between sugar cane fields with spherical sounds of transcendental music and an Indian chanting and instead of the fireworks that are common in Barbados delicately scented incense sticks flared.
Instead of the local Rum’n Coke with dancing and loud music, we lay comfortably on thick sisal mats and pillows, hummed Indian mantras and meditated on what was and what was to develop in the coming year.

The esoteric circle of friends was flooded with emotions in waves - tears and laughter alternated, while the beauty of the nature surrounding us with chirping crickets, whistling frogs and flashing fireflies created a devout serenity and the sea merging with the horizon a feeling of infinite vastness and greatness Let gratitude arise.

Saying goodbye to the old and welcoming the new - if we had known what was in store for us in 2006, we would probably have thrown ourselves a little less euphorically into the new year.

Few We followed suit weeks after New Year's Eve Dominica - Martin's natural favorite island, which he fell in love with more than 20 years ago.
While there are sugar cane fields on Barabdos, on Dominica house-high bamboo trees rise on both sides of the narrow, winding streets.
Lush, dense jungle green and a lavish variety of flowers including year-round red-leaved poinsettias garnish the volcanically active mountainous landscape of Dominica.

If the flat Barbados with 625 inhabitants per square kilometer is one of the most densely populated areas in the world, Dominica with 93 inhabitants per square kilometer is pretty much at the end of the scale.
The Caribbean is full of contrasts.

To today time seems to have stood still on this eco-island in the Caribbean. Achievements of the last century that seem almost taken for granted in Barbados, such as washing machines, stereo systems, televisions, vacuum cleaners or amenities such as water pipes or hot showers, are still a rarity on the volcanic island of Dominica.
Astrid also washed our laundry in the small river that swirls through its steep bed a few hundred meters away from Eggleston. 'She was never alone: ​​Washing clothes in the river is a social event of the village women who meet in changing groups every day at the washing river.

For two out of three months on Dominica we lived in a tiny mountain village with about 300 inhabitants, mostly members of 6 large families, in which some were born with 6 fingers ...
Would have Three weeks after our arrival in Dominica, Martin did not break the foot that he had previously fallen asleep when he got up from the computer - Dominica would have been paradise for us.
As it was, however, he was constantly tied to the house with crutches, while Astrid discovered nature and village life alone.

luck Unfortunate: After a short wait there was an internet connection, albeit a slow one;).

Because of Martins Broken foot we came into direct contact with Caribbean bush medicine:
The naturopath of the small Dominican village, Rasta Alwin, never tired of supplying us with externally and internally usable leaves, flowers and local herbal tinctures, which Astrid wrapped, partly twisted, as cooling compresses under the compression bandages as instructed.


At our Returning from Dominica to Barbados was the new one Barbados Airport almost finished.
The cheekily curved, daring, airy roof structures of the Grantley Adam Airport in Barbados are supposedly storm-proof.
We are certainly not the only ones wondering whether these sail roofs would actually withstand the next hurricane - but this year's hurricane season was peaceful and spared “the island in the sun” again.

Our short stay in Barbados was nothing more than a flying change and less than a week later we were on the plane again, this time to Germany.
For Martin, still on crutches, we had used British Airways' extremely effective handicapped service.

Aunt Astrid! - Uncle Martin!“- two bright children's voices echoed towards us at the FRAport and thick tears of joy rolled down Astrid's cheeks when she saw her nephew again after more than two years.
Laurenz, now 4 years old, did so, but actually couldn't remember us at all.

Similar to our first return home in 2003, Germany appeared to us again in a new, unknown light.
In the unique combination of Summer of the century & World Cup we were witnesses of a Mediterranean-like joie de vivre and, in the shadow of countless black, red and yellow flags, were amazed to see how Emperor Franz and King Football helped their people to a new, sympathetic national euphoria.

We could not quite keep up with the ecstasy of joy, after all the reason for our temporary return home was the evacuation of the maternal one Attic.
In the last few decades it had served as a repository for family achievements and was our last German refuge.
For MArtin, this break-up time was not only more difficult emotionally than we could have imagined from a distance.
All the more so as the response to our advertisements was modest and our final budget resolution was correspondingly lengthy.

Overwhelming were the reunions with families and friends, most of whom welcomed us with open arms and warmly integrated us back into their lives for a while.

In terms of culinary delights, we felt like we were in a land of plenty in Germany:
Numerous invitations to a barbecue, asparagus, strawberry, cherry and plum cake dinner helped us to get "something on the ribs" again.

The In accordance with a tight schedule, Astrid got on the plane to Barbados again in August, where the orphaned Chelsea Cottage waiting to be looked after by us while friend Jules was on home leave in Holland.
Martin should only distribute our last belongings and then, unplanned delayed, follow her to Barbados 3 weeks later.

Suddenly his upper abdominal pain set in a.
Dr. Frick, a competent internist from Binger, was not satisfied with the closest explanation "gallstone" and Dr. Kalden, a skilled radiologist, also in Bingen, finally recognized a life-threatening one Aneurysm at an extremely rare, difficult to access and also hardly operable site near the aorta:
Martin's celiac trunk threatened to burst, which would lead to internal bleeding within a few minutes.
Now it was time to act quickly - but how?

Thanks to audiovisual Skype -Head management between Bingen and Barbados and several war council-like Skype conferences with friendly colleagues, we survived the following anxious days relatively well despite the separation.
But it's an impressive experience, during the day after one of the Germany-wide to search for about five vascular surgeons who could be considered for such an operation and to go to bed in the evening without knowing whether one is bleeding to death when waking up ...

Thanks to the personal commitment of our radiologist friend Anne and over Dr. We found Düber, the head of the radiological department at the Mainz University Clinic, in Dr. Finally, Achim Neufang was a gifted vascular surgeon who agreed to undertake the tricky aneurysm operation on a Saturday on duty.
After a number of very lucky coincidences, Astrid from Barbados even reached the European continent in time for the emergency 7-hour high-tech vascular operation at the Mainz University Hospital.
A whole army of guardian angels must have circled us during this time.
If we had been traveling - as usual and planned - they wouldn't have been able to achieve much ...

Leyla-Joy was born immediately after Martin's successful operation. She was up after one of Astrid's "fertility spells" during a visit from Jaco & Katja Barbados and made Astrid a godmother for the first time.

4 weeks later Astrid set out for Barbados for the second time - but this time MArtin followed, with a newly healing 23cm long median epigastric scar as agreed a few days later.
Without even having the chance to visit some dear German friends during the extension of his stay in Germany.
Unfortunately.

Barely When we arrived in Barbados, the (survival) life in the Caribbean with its WWOOF-like everyday life, the multi-layered partnerships and fried potato relationships pulled us back into the spell of time.
To make matters worse, the roof of our current cohabitation room began to leak - in the middle of the rainy season in Barbados.

Shortly afterwards, the entire termite-eaten roof structure threatened to collapse, which required extensive support and Renovation work required.
This prevented homepage updates from being due:
For months, for example, a current addition to the Hall Of Fame has been pending in honor of the diverse experience of helping friends in 2006.
Above all We would like to thank our childhood friend and sponsor Frank, who generously provided us with his "winter car", Arnold, who helped us with a lot of time and energy mucking out the attic, and Stevie for the parking space.

Special thanks, of course, also go to our colleagues Paul, Jaco, Anne, Christine and Jo for the life-saving joint medical brainstorming, which finally came to a happy end in the vascular surgery department of the Mainz University Hospital thanks to fellow student Achim.

Very In 2006 our mutual world travel forum developed nicely:
More than 5000 members exchange travel information about every place and travel topic in the world in a non-commercially motivated way.

We are delighted that so many like-minded (ex) travelers (to be) are engaged in exchanging ideas under the umbrella of the WRF and are creating a universal reference work for individual travelers together and mutually.

For weeks, however, recurring hacker attacks on the WRF have been causing us worries and additional work.

Together with the provider incoweb.de we are working on a solution and in the second week of January the WRF is to move to a new, dedicated server and the possible failures will be a thing of the past.

We ask all WRF members for patience and thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your loyalty and support!

So much for the ups and downs of our personal review of 2006.

All that remains, all recipients of our newsletter and all sponsors to Barbados to ours BYO New Years Eve Party that we are organizing with Jules in Chelsea Cottage (N 13’04’58’22 / W 59’36’23’13 - to be found at google.earth) from 7 p.m. local time (please note the time difference).

We look forward to numerous appearances, overnight accommodations are available, details in the illustrated English New Year's Eve invitation to Chelsea Cottage, Barbados.

Greetings from your world travelers and

Astrid & Martin