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Navidad, Asado & Papa Noel

Kyffin Blog - Posted 22-12-2010

The idea of having a barbecue for Christmas may be fine for Bondi Beach or corny TV adverts but isn’t usually the lot of a Welshman. Argentina, like Australia is in the Southern Hemisphere, consequently Christmas is in mid summer.

Kyffin spent Christmas 1968 in Patagonia. Festivities started with a visit to a local school where an impromptu drawing lesson was met by wild applause and hero worship. Later there was a Christmas concert and nativity play in Trevelin.

Christmas day was spent in Parque Nacional Los Alerces, the guest of Don Diego Neill, the park superintendent. Christmas lunch was an asado (barbecue) of lamb eaten with bread using a combination of knife, fork and fingers. Food eaten outdoors always seems tastier, so succulent lamb eaten at altitude amongst the whispering pines and looking out towards the snow covered Andes must have been a memorable experience. Don Diego Neill tells Kyffin of his admiration for his Welsh park rangers, saying though that as they live their lives by the Bible they are incapable of ruthlessness. If this is one of our national traits today then I can think of far worse labels, though maybe Papa Noel could give a little bit more ruthlessness to our rugby team in 2011!

Merry Christmas / Nadolig Llawen / Feliz Navidad

William Troughton

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A blog about the work and collections of the National Library of Wales.

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