My Spot

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Just one more thing...

There's another thing I must share with the world: I PASSED MY DRIVING TEST!!! Our car now has to get used to a change - namely, me behind the wheel! :-) Oh, in case you're wondering why the picture of a Herbie: it's because Herbie (the original VW Beetle - now an oldtimer) is really our family car! :-) And I'm honoured to be able to drive it!

Happy birthday to me!

Am I lucky or what? On the day after Halloween I celebrate my birthday! Well, for those of you who don't know the meaning of November 1st: in Slovenia it's the Day of the Dead. We all go to cemeteries and pay our respects to the deceased. You might think that this is a sad day for everyone. And it is. I'm the only exception, I think! I had the incredible luck to be born on that day! Well, you're probably wondering how I can party on such a day. The answer is simple: I don't. Let me explain.

The preparations for November 1st start about a week earlier. People visit their graves to plant flowers (usually pansies and chrysanthemums) and clean the tombstones. You see, graves are a bit different in Slovenia from those in the English speaking countries (the States or Great Britain; I wouldn't know about Canada or Australia, though). In Slovenia they are like little flower gardens. They are devided into two parts - one part is usually covered with sand or small stones (this one is meant for candles or small flower arrangements) and the other part is a flower-bed. And behind these two parts there is the tombstone. So, you can imagine that one has to look after such a grave quite often to keep it nice and clean. And this is done particularly carefully before November 1st. I visit all the graves of my ancestors, too. For me this is an essential part of my birthday. When I come home, my family and I enjoy my birthday cake. And that's the way I like to celebrate my birthday. If there wasn't a visit to the cemetary, it wouldn't be the same! Having your birthday on such a day makes you very special indeed!

Having heaps of fun for Halloween

Halloween has finally come - and gone by now, too. In Slovenia we don't usually celebrate it the way they do in the USA. We don't have "Trick or treat!" and until recently we never had Halloween parties, either. However, we did have pumpkins. The ones who were fortunate to grow them themselves or get them from some friends would put all sorts of pumpkins around their houses: big ones, small ones, orange, green and white ones - you could see pumpkins of all shapes and sizes on people's gardes. But lately pumpkin carving has become quite popular, as well. So, this year you could see many pumpkins with faces on lawns, windows and balconies. I was lucky to get two pumpkins myself this year (a big one and a small one) and they were both of beautiful bright orange colour. Of course, I didn't miss the great opportunity to carve them. I decided to make a couple of "Mummy and Baby" and you can see above how they looked. Well, I must say I enjoyed the carving as much as the mysterious glowing of the two little figures afterwards. It was great! I certainly intend to do it again next year! Who knows - I might even try to make a whole family of four or even more!