Happy Christmas Eve Eve from San Sebastián
‘Twas the night before Christmas Eve,
And all through the town
Everyone was last-minute shopping,
Before the lockdown.
Wandering the narrow streets of Old Town, looking for the perfect gift for everyone I have around.
Ok, rhymes are out of my system now.
There’s a large Nativity set at Plaza Guipuzcoa with more scenes than I think I’ve ever seen, although the last time I saw one was about ten years ago.
Every stall at every market is open, a nice change from the roll-up gates that seem to be plaguing all corners of town.
The sun goes down and the lights go on, and although Erika swears there are fewer decorations this year (How does this town not have a Christmas tree?), I couldn’t ask for more.
Puente Maria Cristina is beautiful any time of year, but she is looking particularly grand tonight.
Churros and chocolate, anyone?
The Gabonetako Azoka (Christmas Fair, Dec 14 – Jan 5) has 35 stalls, 28 on Paseo de Urumea on the west bank of the river, and 7 on Plaza Santa Catalina, next to Hotel Maria Cristina. Local vendors are selling everything from cheeses, chocolates, bread, and wines, to soaps, lotions, jewelry, paintings, toys, and magic tricks.
There’s also an online Christmas Market, with all the same products, plus 30% off purchases of 20€ or more and free delivery in San Sebastian.
This is, without a doubt, my favorite display of them all.
The market continues on the other side of the river, although the increasingly chilly wind is begging me to turn around and go home.
Kursaal is already signaling the New Year we’re all desperate for.
A light rain starts to fall while I make my way back. It’s been waiting on me all day long, so it’s only fair that it gets a chance now that I’m almost done.
Besides, the lights reflecting off the wet pavement look even better.
Curfew is approaching, squares are emptying, stores are closing up.
The last few revelers stumbling home, y es que, aunque en San Sebastian se vive en la calle, si no hay calle no hay de otra más que volver a casa.
My kingdom for fresh churros and chocolatito 🤤
I didn’t think they could be better than the ones at El Moro. I was wrong.