It is one of the joys of living so close to the Oldest City that Christmas simply would not be Christmas if we didn’t wander under its ancient lights.
Even before dark St. Augustine begins to take on a magic glow.
As though the Lion himself had absorbed the rays of the sun.
And the Matanzas become a mirror.
And sometimes you must look twice…trice…lest your eyes deceive.
Tram-loads of tourists sport Santa hats and sing Christmas carols
And their spirit is infectious,.
There is nothing subtle about this City of Lights.
It can even be garish in a delightfully grotesque way
Oh, you can still lose yourself on its narrow streets.
But, really, why would you want to?
When the very trees above sparkle.
And the old market square glows with anticipation.
Would Menendez have thought it blaspheme?
Would his conquistadors have rushed to the ramparts in alarm?
Would Flagler have been appalled?
But these lights are not for the ghosts of St. Augustine’s past. They are for us.
All of us.
Eat your heart out Disney. We didn’t have to fabricate a plastic Main Street.
We’ve got Florida’s first Main Street.
And it is glorious.
Especially at Christmas. The season of miracles.
And this is my Florida.