So, it’s all about me, right? Since this show is clearly for my entertainment, I’m gonna comment on how I’m finding it.
The first thing to note is that Oaxaca, that’s MY Oaxaca, is suddenly full of fair weather tourists. How very dare they just rock up for this awesome party that is Dia De Muertos? If you haven’t been here for at least a month, putting up with random noisy and dangerous fireworks at all hours of the day, if you haven’t been here to see the earliest decoration go up, then piss off, quite frankly. I haven’t appreciated hearing tourists complain about how crowded it is because they’re the ones crowding us out! We total, genuine Oaxacenos, those of us with at least four weeks here notched up, are feeling jostled in the streets now.
That aside, things have really moved up a gear in the last few days. We’ve gone from the odd store selling masks and gloves aimed at kids to every store having incredible decorations, usually giant skeletons and shrines. The market stalls all sell day of the dead tinsel, yes, that’s right people, you heard me, day of the dead tinsel. It’s amazing. We may have bought some. Our Xmas tree is gonna be ace next year. We got ghosts, spiders and glow in the dark frankenstein tinsel. Pretty cool.
We are also tasting all the skull dulces we can find :chocolate looks great but tastes awful. Sugar skulls too sweet. Skulls that look as if they’re made from sesame seeds are yummy and we have no clue what they’re made from.
Tonight in zocalo, after a meat market meal, we saw an outdoor performance by a brass and woodwind Orchestra whilst eating local lollies. That was pretty good fun.
On Monday we are going to parade with the kids’ school in the morning and then in the evening we will be going to a cemetery with our school to check out what the other locals do to celebrate this exciting time.
Tuesday is dia de angelitos, which is a day to remember children who died. I think it’s a lot quieter than the following day, dia de adultos, which is the main day. Only after these two days can families take down their shrines and make use of the food stuffs they’ve “offered” to their ancestors.
I had learned about the shrines and seen a few pictures but nothing prepared me for the sheer size and wealth of those we’ve been seeing in hotels restaurants and shops. I’d also heard about students competing to make the best shrines around town. Until today we hadn’t seen any and then we saw this being created.
Wow, just wow. So beautiful, so intricate and so moving. Dedicated to women killed by men this year in Mexico. I had to sit and just look for a while.