Saturday, September 16, 2006
Dia de Independencia
Happy "July 4th!" to all of Central America today! Last night was a fun cultural experience. Even thought the 16th is the real Independence Day, on the 15th everyone celebrates. There are places all over town where people congregate for festivities and the "grito", or the shout of Viva Mexico! A few of us went to a place called Chapalita, which is just the name for this part of town with a pretty glorieta. It looked like a big carnival, with rides and games and food stands and people, people, people! It was really neat. Then, in the middle of the glorieta was a gazebo/pavillion where, around 10:00, some poeople came up had a flag salute, sand the anthem, and cheered for past (important?) people, ending in one big grito of "Viva Mexico!" Very patriotic and exciting. Then there were fireworks.. very wierd ones at first that were spinning and spraying off of this metal contraption. then they did the real kind, right over our head... which I have to admit was a little unnerving.
It was crowded. It was bright, but also dark at the same time. There were street vendors (I bought a purse!) and food stands (the most common dish was corn with cream and cheese...but I found sweet potatoes!). People were selling empty eggs full of confetti and bottles of what looked like it would be silly string, but was really this soapy foam stuff. By the end of the night, half of the people were covered in one, the other, or both.