Here it is already December 23 and like many, I don't know how time before Christmas has passed so quickly! This morning I went down to the municipal farmers' market in Puerto de la Cruz to have a look around and pick up some fresh vegetables for the next festive days.
Above is the Christmas tree in the center of the main floor. Here are some images of the bountiful produce, exotic fruits and tempting displays of vegetables that I saw there.
I was so tempted to buy one of these boxes of luscious dates from Medjoul, Tunis. The stall owner gave me a taste and they were so big, soft and sweet! But at 16 Euros a box I didn't buy. Now I wish I had!
Perhaps I'll run back in the morning to buy them. What a Christmas treat - better than chocolate!
And some unusual things as well. I had to look up OCUMO (Xanthosoma Sagittifolium) as I had never seen them before:
And here are Yuccas (background) and in the front are tree tomatoes, called Tamarillo (Solanum Betaceum):
And it wouldn't be a Tenerife market without the delicious local potatoes, called papas here, which have a knobbly appearance and are ancient varieties, some found only in Tenerife and the Andes mountains of Peru and Bolivia.
The best are the papas negras, yema de huevo, dark outside and golden inside with a wonderful flavour. Translated that means...black egg yolk potatoes, referring to both the outer and inner colours. They are the most expensive of all. I bought a large bag of them!
Here is the bag I bought. Sunglasses are for scale.
And the ubiquitous tortilla Española, or Spanish potato and egg omelette is here as well, being sold by the piece. It was making me hungry!
Outside, a few days ago I was wandering around the town and came upon this giant ferris wheel, installed in the area by the harbour where traditionally a Christmas fair with midway appears at this time of the year. Truly the biggest I have ever seen.
Poinsettias are everywhere the municipal gardeners can find a spot to put them. They really do dress up the town and are a treat for visitors who come down from snowy Europe.
Here they are in the Plaza de la Iglesia, the garden by the main church in the town center, near the plaza.
A living statue is seen here, posing without moving a muscle. What a way to earn a few coins, standing still for hours. However when I put a coin in his basket, he moved and thumped his wooden staff, making a gesture of thanks.
The garden of this downtown hotel is always colourful.
The cafes on the main Plaza del Charco are favourite places to stop, have a coffee, read a paper and people watch.
And sitting by the water of the center fountain is another pastime here in this mild climate.
And here to end is the Sussex Carol, one of my favourite Christmas carols. Have a wonderful Christmas and holiday season everyone. May you enjoy the love and warmth of family and friends at this time!
King's College Cambridge 2008, Sussex Carol arr. Philip Ledger: