Dec 31, 2013

HAPPY NEW YEAR: With thanks and gratitude I send each of you ¨un gran abrazo¨ from the land of the Maya!

The Fuego Volcano, Sacatepequez, Guatemala
Last night there was a little celebration.  It was with a group of friends.   I had the opportunity to share the events of my life over the last 35 years of sobriety.  Now I am 70 years old, 35 years  sober represents half of my life.

My own real life experience has been one of being fortunate in most respects.  My parents were loving, providing, hospitable and kind people.  I come from a whole long line of English people on both sides of my family.  My mothers family go all the way back to the earliest colonists of Conneticut after immigrating from England.  Mom's name is the well known name of many early settlers of that colony who then became noteable citizens of the State of Conneticut.

My father and his family came directly from Yorkshire, in England and I am first generation American on my fathers side.  A name amongst millions of English people named the same name. In Latin America I use all three names.  I like having both my parents names incorporated into my name.

Since my retirement at age 62 I have lived at the foot of the ¨Volcan de Fuego¨ in a small village in the Department of Sacatepequez, near Antigua, Guatemala.  I have an art studio in the living room of my home and all my furniture is painted by me. My life is colorful, it always has been.  I live in a rented/cozy and modest house amongst  birds chirping, four dogs barking and lots of religious processions that go right down the Calle Real which happens to be just outside my front door.  I am one of just a few ¨Norte Americanos¨ who live in this town.  

When I got up early this morning I was already greeted with New Years holiday well-wishers from around the World at facebook and email. Tomorrow will be 2014 and I will have lived to see it. No doubt there will be no confusion about when the New Year arrives in this little tiny of patch of human clustering as there will be lots of fireworks.   Fireworks and ¨bombas¨ (they´ve started already) that will take us through the night. Yes, all night.  Already I hear Mexican Ranchera music playing from concert sized speakers placed in the many ¨plazalitos¨ around town.  The beat goes on and by tomorrow morning, this same time, it will finally stop...exhausted but happy, the folks of San Miguel will have brought the New Year in  with a bang! 

Life around me truly astounds me.  It, life, always has.

I send you my warmest and best greetings from the foot of the volcano. May peace, happiness and good health be with you in the New Year, 2014.  I feel the love from those of you  that have touched my life both now and before have been generous to me and you have made me glad and I love you.

With thanks and gratitude I send each of you ¨un gran abrazo¨ from the land of the Maya on New Years Eve,

Leonardo Ricardo

1 comment:

JCF said...

Sorry, I missed you in NorCal, Len. :-(

...but Prospero Año Nuevo anyway! :-)