Here at the Paradise Cafe in Baja, where we have been coming for smoothies and wireless internet for the last four days since we arrived, the two nods to Christmas are (a) a small sign on the door announcing that you can buy mistletoe on the 23rd (oops, we missed it) and kiss your sweetie (still time for that), and (b) … I guess there is no (b). No Christmas carols, no santas, not a lot of stuff in the stores, not a lot of decorations. It’s lovely — like being on a very healthy eating plan. The absence of Christmas blare is amazing. It’s very good for children. We had a small present-opening morning on Thursday and then they all left to do things that were more fun than help their parents pack their car to drive down to Mexico. (Charlie went to school — because it’s a party day. Jack and William sang at a holiday party in Sacramento, where Arnold Schwarzenegger handed out hannukah gelt in a slightly grumpy way, which I liked hearing about. He’s also not as tall as they thought.)
We drove down last Friday morning, stopping in San Diego for a party and then after a huge, increasingly insane drive down the Baja peninsula that lasted 23 hours (note to ourselves: don’t ever do that again), we arrived at Los Barrilles where, basically, there’s not a lot to do besides kiss under the mistletoe, and eat fish.
It’s a nice little town. People come down here to fish and windsurf. Baja midnight occurs at about 10 p.m. It took me three days to stop making lists.
I hope you’ve stopped making lists too, and are about to settle into a beautiful holiday — no matter where you are, the whole paradise thing is, without a doubt, inside.