The only kind of snow in Guyana is in a cone with a sweet syrup poured on top. But that doesn’t stop the Guyanese from donning Santa hats and placing cut-out reindeer on their porches. It’s time to party! Ninety-five degree heat has nothing on the Guyanese desire for a festive Christmas season. Below is a sampling of what I saw last week in Guyana.
No one can miss this giant tree on the road to Georgetown from the airport. I enjoyed the irony of fake evergreen trees in a country that is already green twelve months out of the year.
Roving music men sell a variety of Christmas CDs including tracks such as a calypso “Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer.” All CDs are pirated, of course.
There will be a big lime (hangout/drinking party) on Main Street the day after Christmas. My cab driver told me it would be the biggest street party of the year.
The festive Christmas atmosphere, drawn from the secular aspects of the holiday, spans across all religions in Guyana –Muslims and Hindus included. A Muslim woman, her head wrapped in a shawl, wished me a great Christmas when I bought her avocados at the market. The driver of the above car in Parika, who had detailed his car with the word Taliban, had also hung a “Merry Christmas” bow on his grill. In Guyana, even a follower of religious extremism does not want to be left out of the party. Now that’s the Christmas spirit.