What Christmas meant to Helga Voci. This says more about Helga than we have ever known.
“In my family Christmas was always a very traditional , also sentimental and familiar festivity with a lot of food preparation and each year it had to be the same dinner, as fish soup, carp with homemade potato salad and different other salads, big dessert. I remember my mother was cooking for 2 days and some weeks before Christmas she started with special Christmas cookies and Christmas cakes and nobody was allowed before Christmas to try them. We always spent the Christmas days with the whole family in Bavaria, it was cold and all covered with snow and at midnight we used to go to church, it was a small and cosy village church and it was very nice.
When I first knew Diego in Paris he was not a big fan of Christmas, I think he had been too long away from his family, mostly vagabonding through the world, then he became acquainted with Josiane, his first wife. She was from Genevra, her father had a cottage somewhere in the mountains and they went there in wintertime, skiing and probably also for the Christmas festivities.
The first year with Diego in Paris we decided to go and live in London, just before Christmas I left Paris and went to Germany to spend the Christmas days with my family, Diego, instead, left for London. At that time he did not yet know my family and he wanted to meet them another time. We stayed about 10 months in London and as it was raining a lot he wanted to leave and drive towards the south, as far as possible. So we landed in Almuniecar, a small village in South Spain, rented an apartment and stayed for about 6 months there, it was beautiful and warm but no Christmas atmosphere, I wanted a Christmas tree, and as there were no such trees growing there we went to Madrid(about 500 km or more) and bought a nice Christmas tree, packed it on the car and transported it to the South. Then later on we mostly spent the Christmas days in Bavaria with my parents and my sister and her family and my grandmother and Diego also liked it, he liked to be in the family and he liked our tradition.
Later on , when Alessandra was born and Lakshmi, our Indian housemaid stayed with us and we lived in Taunusstein, my parents also used to come to our house for Christmas, always with the same tradition. One year we had a very big Christmas party in our house (see image below), together with Christine and her family, Keyvan and Liliane Dussard with her children, my parents and Lakshmi, there is a foto we made at that time, it was a very beautiful party.
And then in 1985, a few weeks before Christmas Diego died, within 6 weeks and this year was my and my daughter`s most awful Christmas.!”