Monday, October 26, 2009
Thanksgiving for the Spirits
So, when people back there ask me to explain Day of the Dead, this is how I start. (They don't get it if you get into the REAL explanation. Trust me, most don't). I say, "You know how everyone comes home for Thanksgiving in the USA?" And they say, "Yes". I say, "Well many Mexicans go home to their families for this celebration". "Oh", they say. Then I say, "You know how when you're going home, your family prepares all your favorite foods?" They say, "Yes". And I say, "Well they do that for Day of the Dead. Fixing all the favorite foods of the departed and then eventually the living family has a big feast". Then I say, "You know how everyone sits around and talks about who isn't with the group or family anymore? Who has died? Who is sick? Whatever" And, they say "Yes". I say, "Well they do that in Mexico, but it is usually around the gravesite of the departed as they wait for the spirit to return. The WHOLE family."
Sometimes they get it. Sometimes they don't. In the past, when they didn't, I would go on and on telling them more - now I just stop and don't say anything else. It's better that way.