Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A Day of Remembrance

Some years ago (many actually!) I spent 6 months in Mexico at an student exchange and got the enjoy one of the best celebration called Dia De Los Muertos or the Day of the Dead. I was mesmerized by the originality and creativity behind all the artifacts made to celebrate such a day.

 Aren't these little skeletons the cutest thing even though their a bit creepy (Image Credit)

The tradition is celebrated in many Latin countries but the most colorful celebration is in Mexico. The celebration revolves around family and friends getting together to commemorate those who have passed away.

Altar that includes the traditional cempazuchitl or the flower of the dead... (Image Credit)

The celebration includes building an altar for the dead either at one's home or business that includes some of their belongings like jewelry or small artifacts along with their pictures, favorite foods and anything that they might have liked in life. The altar is also decorated with candles or veladoras, sugar skulls, religious imagery and the traditional marigold along with other colorful flowers.

Boats with "calaveras" (skeletons) on the Lago de Patzcuaro (Image Credit)

The most famous place for the celebration is at the Lago de Patzcuaro where boats lit with candles and decorated make a procession towards the island sitting at the middle of the lake. All around the lake the local people built large altars to pray for the souls of the dead and remember the good times with them.

Altar built on a town surrounding the lake (Image Credit)

Unlike many other places in Mexico death is celebrated instead of mourned especially on a day like this and it's not considered either morbid or creepy because they are remembering their loved ones.

Have a great day and remember to celebrate life!!!