Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Christmas is coming

Tourists pause, aimless and free, fondle market wares, hold them aloft, twist and turn, alert for the perfect Christmas gift.
Street market stalls laden with goods
Heels clack clack clack
on the footpath behind me
Loud. Insistent. Demanding.

I turn, maintain momentum, keep pace:
“You seem to be in a hurry. Must be a local!”  
A laugh and wide grin, “How did you guess?”

I gesture to the tourist busses, densely packed groups, alfresco diners and coffee sippers, deeply relaxed and at ease.

Muslim women, tightly scarfed, giggle together;

Cheery red poinsettias.
Elderly Italian and Greek women with sensible shoes and bags, closely inspect the local farm fruit and vegetables;

Asian groups of mixed ages and genders, umbrellas angled against the sun, wide brimmed hats pulled low over black hair and tied with bows under chins, ponder whether to try the local Japanese restaurant for lunch – their body language is clear.

No, they’re not local, but they are welcome …
or are they?

I was once lost for words when a friend said “I didn’t know we got that type of person down here” when she saw a group of traditionally dressed Moslem women.

 As I watch cars inching down the crowded street, sporting jaunty antlers and red noses under the searing sun, I wonder sadly if that sentiment remains.

Isn’t there enough room for us all?
The Town Crier decked with tinsel making a Christmas announcement.

I cringe at the addition of a Santa hat


Anonymous said...

I live in a very diverse area and I welcome meeting people from different cultures around the world. There is indeed enough room!

Liza said...

Yes Ma'am! There IS enough room.

Barb said...

Hi Sue, Your posts always make me think. The world is very vast - surely there is space for all. I hope you have a wonderful Dec (relaxed and calm, even though you're a local).

sue said...

Stephen, I couldn't agree more! Diversity makes for such interesting conversations.

Liza. !

Barb, as do yours! I always seem to slow down a little after visiting you.

Have a wonderful Christmas season everyone!