There’s only one particular Christmas that stands out for me! I spent it with my parents, grandparents, and my cousins and their parents that had come from France to spend this time with us. They brought lots of food I had never tried or even heard of like pâté, oysters, cheese and perhaps a lot more I cannot recall. I must have been about 7, my cousin Maria 6 and Filipe around 9 or 10.
It was by far the biggest Christmas gathering, as we are a small family. It was also the first time I saw a Barbie doll! My cousin got one that night called “Crystal Barbie” and it had a beautiful glittery dress. The Barbie craze wouldn’t reach Portugal for another year or two. My cousin Filipe got a small electronic game and again this device was new to me.
But that night my request to Santa also came true! Books…lots of books neatly piled up all around the pine tree!
When my cousins moved to the Algarve the following year their Christmas’ were mainly spent with my uncles’ side of the family, so I found Christmas very boring after that as I have no brothers or sisters, or any more close family. Funnily enough the great majority of my close friends had no siblings either so we did divide our time between each other’s house whenever possible.
So as years went by the best memories that remained from Christmas were new books with new stories. Books have the ability to fill spaces, transform us and help us grow.
And Christmas is almost here again and if you’re like me you’ll do anything to avoid the last minute Christmas rush. At Magna Carta Bookshop we already have a variety of Christmas cards, beautiful diaries for 2006, calendars, address books, and of course all sort of books, that will certainly make great gifts this Christmas.
Our “Books for Christmas” catalogue is also available if you prefer to choose your gifts and order from the comfort of your home. There’s something for every one!
I’m sending a big hug for my cousin Maria in Andorra, who is spending Christmas away from home this year.
Merry Christmas everyone!