Melchor, Gaspar and Baltasar

6 01 2009

img_38031A sweet little Christmas tree in a sweet little apartment with the villancios (carols) ringing out, “Ya Vienen los Reyes” (Now the Kings are Coming)

img_38011Goodies to just keep our minds off what was about to come…


Little Billy birds to remind us that he’s right there with us…


With food, candles and a Victrola – who needs more?


ahh yes…there is more…


we find our assigned seats…


and we are graced with plates overflowing with baked potatoes, asparagus, red cabbage, broccoli and cranberry slaw…and crab legs


time to linger and reminisce about Three Kings Days past and to ruminate on those to come and the wisdom of waiting till all the American commercial Christmas is over to do our buying and quiet celebrating when all around us think it’s over…our own little secret


But the biggest secret of all was the handiwork of the 1eyedmonkee who had never dared attempt a roscón de reyes in all these long years in exile.  There are two items hidden away – but she had to improvise…there was no ceramic baby jesus (an ity bitty little spanish water pot had to do) to bring good luck in the year ahead to whoever finds it and in lieu of an haba (dried bean)…just some black beans wrapped in tin foil to the one who is to pay for the roscón.  We’ll do better next year since she has a year to prepare.

The best laugh was an unintentioned trick.  I decided to wait to add the whipped cream filling till after dinner.  While everyone was busy with other things – I cut the roscón in half, carefully lifted the top and set it aside as I filled it with fluffy white and gingerly replaced the top.

When Shop Girl took a fork to her first bite – she was all atwitter thinking she had been the luckiest of lucky to find the prize right off…but all she found was was the foil top of one of the bottles of wine we’d had.  When I set the top of the roscón down it apparently got set on top of the wine foil and I never saw it as I carefully replaced the top of the cake.  But she was a lucky girl after all when she found that the tiny water pot tucked away literally had her name on it.  I was just hiding something that was hers after all.

And that is just like the Magi reminding us that the best things are staring us in the face with no wrapping paper on them at all.  They are things we lose sight of  – things we take for granted – things that were ours all along.