Monday, January 2, 2017

Perspective, Travel, and Barcelona's Pooping Christmas Creche Figurines

Hello 2017!

2016 had its challenges, but an end-of-year trip helped me change my perspective to determined, optimistic, and yes, allowing myself to have fun and laugh again.

It all started with a rather unique Christmas holiday tradition celebrated in Barcelona, Spain -- the Caganer figure. Basically, it's someone who has pulled their pants down and is taking a dump, and this someone is included in Catalan nativity scenes - There's the baby Jesus, Mary, Joseph, and yes, a pooping person watching them.

And no, I'm not making this up. As the printed materials explain,

The "caganer" is a typical Catalan figure of the nativity scenes traditionally represented as a farmer with a typical Catalan hat, a red girdle and black pants. It is believed that, with their faeces [sic], these farmers fertilized the soil for the following year. This figure symbolizes luck and joy, and it is said that if you don't include it in the nativity scene it can bring misfortune. In fact, for many celebrities, it has become an honour to have their own "caganer" figure.
There are hundreds and hundreds of these figures, including Beethoven, C3PO (pooping a metal nut), and yes, even Donald Trump. Here's a photo of a Barcelona Christmas fair stall selling these caganer figures:

We had to buy one, if for no other reason than to have proof this was real.

A different perspective on Olaf - Caganer style

If there was ever a reminder to not take things too seriously, this was it!

So my thanks to Barcelona, and the privilege of being able to travel, and especially to one crazy-unexpected Christmas tradition for reminding me to:

lighten up 

see the opportunity in challenges (a pooping farmer isn't necessarily a slam-dunk commercial opportunity, but they merchandised the heck out of it!)

and know that luck and joy are right there for all of us... (and that the shit of last year can "fertilize the soil" for the year to come!)

Here's to a fertile, joyous, funny, determined, fighting-for-justice, and sharing-my-light year ahead!

The light in me recognizes and acknowledges the light in you,


KarolinaS said...

I had NO idea of this tradition. How wonderfully positive! Thanks for sharing. With all the fertilizer 2016 provided, we are no doubt in store for a 2017 full of beautiful blooms and crops. Love you, Lee!

Anonymous said...

This makes me even more glad that I opened my holiday letter with poop this year. I was talking about my toddler, but also that it's been a poopy year. Maybe that's laying the groundwork for better things to come.

Thank you for sharing. The Olaf Caganer figure is delightful. (Push it out, Olaf! Everyone, go, go, go!)