The Day of the Dead is a big Holiday in Mexico. Some people say that Mexicans don’t celebrate Halloween. Tell that to the little girl in the photo below. She was all ready to go trick or treating in the evening. Just like in the United States, parents take their children out trick or treating to the expensive neighborhoods. I bought enough candy for a hundred children. Only five children knocked on my door. The same ones kept returning.
I live in a Mexican neighborhood with small homes. What they did in my street is to close it off to traffic, string up balloons and put out tables and chairs and have a party for everyone living on the street. My friend and I took out all our candy and gave it to the children. After we went back home, two young men knocked on my door and handed us two bowls of pazole. (more…)
This is my favorite season of the year. Something is going on all the time. I can’t keep up with it all. Between the expat community and the Mexican community, there is no resting. There are parties almost every night. Last night as I was getting ready for bed, I heard the big fireworks going off. I have learned to tell the smaller cohetes (which just make a very loud noise) from the ones that burst in the sky with patterns of fire. You know, the kind we see north of the border. I went out into my yard so I could see them better. I was wondering why they were going off on the 21st. Then I remembered about the winter solstice. I don’t know if that was the reason or not but it was a very loud evening with lots of music and parties all over my neighborhood. There are more than forty holidays and festivals in Mexico. So you can understand why I can’t keep up with them all.
Much of the activities for the Mexican community revolve around the Catholic Churches. Above is a photo of the church in Chapala with the Christmas tree and a large Creche. These Creches can be seen all over town, both inside the stores and businesses and outside. On Christmas Eve, there are live ones at the church in Ajijic. I will show some of these later in this article. If I can get my camera to take some good night photos. (more…)
Christmas in Mexico lasts for many days. Las Posadas start on Dec. 16th and end on Dec. 24, Noche Buena. During those nine days, people are setting off cohetes (Fireworks) and church bells ring often. It is very noisy in Mexico during this time of the year. Las Posadas are parades of different groups of people walking down the streets. They are from various neighborhoods or sometimes they are specific kinds of workers, like carpenters or fishermen. People carry candles and statues. The statues may be of Mary, Jesus and/or saints. The people sing Christmas songs and sometimes stop for prayer or religious readings during their walk.
The parade is symbolic of Mary and Joseph looking for a place to spend the night, knocking on doors and being turned away. Finally, the parade ends up at a house where they are welcomed. There is food and drink. The drink is usually a traditional punch of sugar cane, prunes, guava and cinnamon sticks. They are also served little round fruit cakes called Tejocotes.
Have you ever thought about getting involved with the theater? Well, here is your opportunity. The Lakeside Little Theatre is in need of volunteers to get involved in all aspects of production, from acting to set design and all things in between. Artists are needed to do the set designs.
It is located in San Antonio, in between Ajijic and Lake Chapala, off Allen W. Lloyd Drive. It is just a block up the hill on the mountainside of the carretera. It is on the same street as the gated community, El Parque. (more…)
I have lived in this area over three years. During that time I had heard many things about the Northern Lights Music Festival but I never went. I don’t like to go out alone at night and the tickets cost more than I was willing to pay. What a mistake. My friend offered me her ticket to the gala opening on February 19th. I went with another friend and we had a ride there and back. It was a real eye opener for me. I had no idea what pleasures I had been missing out on for those years.
Since I never intended to see any of the performances I didn’t pay attention to the activities surrounding the festival. All I knew was that musicians were in town and tickets were being sold at the Lake Chapala Society and there was talk about the inspiring performances. I just thought that the concerts were for the wealthy among us. (more…)