La Vita Triestina Buon Natale da Trieste

La Vita Triestina – Buon Natale Merry Christmas from Trieste December 23, 2014 Advent is the season observed in Christian churches as a time of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the Nativity of Jesus at Christmas. The term is an anglicized version of the Latin word adventus, meaning “coming”. Trieste is definitely all decked out for Christmas and I would say that the Triestini relish every moment of this Advent season. The start of the season was a French Mercatino in Ponterosso at the end of November. All the booths were like little wood clad cabins. They were selling French products from Camembert cheese to Beaujolais Nouveau to Dijon mustard, to oysters and champagne to tablecloths from Provence. Early December was warmer than average and the market area was packed with people every evening. This was followed by what I would call a large “flea market” along the Viale XX Setembre. There the booths sold products such as the slicer and dicer that we see advertised on the Shopping Channel plus lots of candies, salamis, and flea market type clothing. Nothing exceptional but still it was an outing and there were lots of people milling about especially again in the evening. The past 10 days there has been the Mercatino Natale in Ponterosso and it has very Christmas themed booths. Again everything from torrone, chocolates and Christmas trinkets to Vin brule and panetone. And again an opportunity to be out and about and well attended all day long. Piazza Unita puts on its Christmas colors by way of a huge Christmas Tree and a large Nativity scene. What is interesting is that all the Nativity scenes in the churches and this one in Piazza Unita do not yet have a baby in the manger- the Advent – waiting for the birth of Jesus. And interestingly a lot of stores and restaurants have nativity scenes set up in the windows. There is also a kind of continuous light and sound show in Piazza Unita every evening with a Christmas theme and projected onto the Municipio – the City Hall of Trieste. Of course the daily routine is to walk down to Piazza Unita, watch the light show for awhile and then go to Eppinger’s for a spritz. All very pleasant when the evening temperature is a balmy 12C. With my sister’s help Christmas has arrived in my apartment too. There is a huge bay leaf tree out my balcony and we made use of its green leaves to make a garland for my front door and a nice bouquet for the living room. Instead of my usual 8 foot tree I have a miniature 10 inch pine tree with miniature vintage decorations. And all is good! My year in Trieste has been more than I ever expected it to be – I have met many interesting people and through and with them have come to understand, appreciate and live a totally different life style. Buon Natale, Felice Novo Anno Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year

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