Light strung palm trees. Warm embraces. Gifts stacked three rows deep under the Christmas tree. Pleneras playing in the background. Alcapurrias. Pasteles. Lechón a la varita. Trash cans full of ice cold beers. The children play with generic brand toys. The men play domino and swap old war stories. The women toil in the kitchen making the guineitos en escabeche. In the corner altar, A candle burns bright in front of a few pictures. Our way to honor the dearly departed; To remember where we came from and why we are here. ¡Feliz Navidad!