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Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Time to leave the hood!

Today is Cinco de Mayo, a holiday celebrating the results of the Battle of Puebla, not a liberating marker, but still a symbol of the little man fighting the bigger tyrant.

Immigrants bring their own traditions when they move to another place. Mexicans and Mexican Americans have brought the joyful celebration of Cinco de Mayo to many neighborhoods in the Americas.

Though I live in a cool place with constant showers and violent winds, today we will paint our day in rich colors and set a table with margaritas, nachos and guacamole to start the celebration. We will grill some meat, add some hot chiles, warm up some tortillas and ole, we'll be dancing a la folklorico, the hat dance, the tarantula.

I spent decades working in neighborhoods where Spanish was the first language. I got pretty fluent, able to converse with mothers and grandmothers who came to school for different functions. In my youth, I even learned some folklorico, dancing and swaying with a music that is so joyful and alive, it gives you back your soul with a couple of tunes.

If you have a Mexican neighborhood in your city, drop in today. You'll be treated to delicious food, amazing hospitality, and foot stomping music that will chase away any chill in the air.

Ole.

45 comments:

Amy said...

My father worked with immigrants for many years during my childhood and I grew up thinking Mexican food was the only food that existed! I still love it, crave it and cook it at least a couple of times a week.

Your celebration sounds wonderful!! What a great day you're going to have!

Ribbon said...

Sounds like a lot of fun.
I don't believe that I have ever knowingly met a Mexican person, but I do know Mexican food.

best wishes
Ribbon

Ribbon said...

Hello again...
I've had a lovely time here this evening with a lot to catch up on as I haven't been able to get over for a while.
I absolutely loved your story and I hope that you have another for us in the future.
I have commented on other posts today too.

best wishes Ribbon

Sniffles and Smiles said...

Fabulous post!!!! Love it...Oh, and makes me soo hungry...I spent my teen years in San Diego...and the food we could find there was scrumptious! Happy Cinco de Maya! Keep dancing!

Matawheeze said...

Though I'm of German ancestry and am American through and through, we'll toddle out for burritos for dinner and dIg out my favorite Mariachi album for ambiance. Doing a corned beef brisket on St. Pat's Day or adding sauerkraut and beer to an Oktoberfest is what we are all about! Celebrate the melting pot and honor the diversity in our land! And I'll add MY Olé!

Helen said...

I love embracing all of the ethnic celebrations throughout the year ~ and must confess, this is my favorite of all! Big dinner planned in our townhome this evening. I hadn't thought about music to accompany dinner, but will search for a radio station I can 'stream' through the evening ~ appropriate for the day.

Reya Mellicker said...

Cinco de Mayo in San Francisco was quite festive. Not so much here in DC, but I'm making chicken chipotle tacos and what the hell, maybe I'll get some tequila and make margaritas, too. Cheers!

Reasons to be Cheerful 1,2,3 said...

I had a good catch up here today. I love the story you wrote, it was just the style of writing I really enjoy - you should write more! Or do you? I also loved the Looking for a job post - great idea and made me laugh too.

I did not know about Cinco de Mayo, it sounds great fun. Vibrant colours and delicious food, my idea of a great evening.

A Woman Of No Importance said...

I wish our neighbourhood was as diverse to have a Mexican community, Rosaria!

Please enjoy your food and Margaritas and happy Cinquo de Mayo, if that's what one says - sorry if it isn't, but you know I send you my best, as ever!

Elizabeth Bradley said...

I have many Mexican and Mexican American family members and friends. Here in So Cal we are immersed in the culture, it's second nature for some of us. I have learned how to prepare authentic Mexican food, at Christmas we must have tamales. As for Cinco de Mayo, I am preparing a feast tonight for my daughter and her husband (they just had a baby girl!). Otherwise I would invite myself over to your place, (Jet airliner needed) lol.

Siobhán said...

Sounds like great fun Rosaria.
Enjoy

An English Shepherd said...

What an interesting celebration. We just do May Day over hear, not very Mexican !

Wizz :-)

Lola said...

With all the media hype about Mexico and the swine flu, this post is a godsend for our dear Mexican friends. Gracias, Rosaria! Clinking margaritas with you...

I missed you! Wonderful episode post series last week. I want you to post another one soon. Ciao amica mia.

marc aurel said...

I so enjoyed "Detours". I hoped, of course, that they would influence each other more, but who knows if they did?

Without any cultural reference, we happened to have fajitas tonight.
They should have been last night, but Matthew fell victim to the eel in sushi and was terribly sick.

We summer holidayed in Spain when I was a kid, but my Spanish culture is limited to guitar music and Goya.

Cathy always dreams of Italy, but I try to pull those dreams further West. I would love to wander in Andalucia.

Gran said...

I love cinco de Mayo celebrations, although I passed it up this year.

C. Michael Cox said...

All you're missing is an eagle and you'd have the Mexican flag represented in your photo. Very nice!

Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

Happy cinco de Mayo! Have a marguerita for me! Ole!

Natalie said...

I second that, Lizzy! Ole!xx

sallymandy said...

Lovely post! Thank you. I love all things south of the border, having lived in Arizona for 18 years and gone to school in Tucson. I've never had such moutwatering tortillas as the ones I got there. And I've always been fascinated with the culture. I was fortunate to absorb more of that while living for three years in San Antonio, Texas. Just loved it.

Thank you for your visit!

Man of Roma said...

Well, if you learned Spanish, you were more similar to Ron as a teacher, I mean closer to the kids and their families. Your Italian heritage might have helped for you to be close to them. In the Mission district in San Francisco, where I recently went to visit my daughter, I met many of them. They told me they were proud of their Mexican roots. One lady selling pots of all different colours said: "The Spanish have cut the tree but not the roots. Look at all these colours."

Polly said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Polly said...

This does sound like fun, I wish I could take part in the celebrations, I must say Latin American culture is a big unknown for me but I'd love to visit Mexico one day.

And to answer your question about blog camp - Julocka from Copenhagen had this great idea that those of us who live in the vicinity and can travel do Denmark for weekend should meet. This is pretty exciting, I've never met any of my blogger friends and I know we'll have lots of fun, we already know each other quite well.
There is a blog set up for the purpose and the link to it is in my latest post. If you're interested.

PS Sorry I deleted my previous comment, made a small mistake in it but the rest was pretty much the same

Shadow said...

very interesting. my extent of mexican extends as far as.... i love mexican food, so thanks for the info.

Susan said...

Yes - I like your take on Cinco de Mayo - we need to 'lighten up' about immigration around here. (And any excuse for a Dos Equis)!

A Cuban In London said...

What a lovely post. It exudes with what makes us humans unique: acceptance. Many thanks and I hope you have kept practicing that Spanish. Will be back later to test you :-).

Greetings from London.

Sarah Laurence said...

It sounds fun to live in a diverse community. What a great celebration.

Paul Costopoulos said...

Living in a diverse community is, at times,tricky but mostly fun. Acceptance is the key word, enjoyment follows.

Sink said...

Yes, we had mexican food for the holiday at our multicultural family meal too. Some of my kids are learning Spanish in school as their third language. Thanks for the reminder! Great pic, too.

D'Arcy said...

Ole indeed! I hope your evening was as amazing as mine.

thanks for stopping by my blog! Aren't those young kids amazing!!

willow said...

Hope you enjoyed Cinco de Mayo! I appreciate your encouraging words on my poetry. Thank you!

Pyzahn said...

In the hood, Cinco de Mayo is a day to see how many Margueritas you can drink. I like the idea of history, family tradition and good food much better.

R.L. Bourges said...

Hope you had a good time. Thanks for visiting my blog, lakeviewer.

david mcmahon said...

Leaving the hood is more common now ....

La Belette Rouge said...

How did I miss Cinco de Mayo? Well, any day is a good day to celebrate. As I live in California which used to be Mexico there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy the impact of Mexican culture.

valeria said...

Che bello! I didn't know this, thank you Lakeviewer!
Unfortunately I don't have any mexican neighbours...

♥ Braja said...

Don't speak Mexican, but love the food....do I qualify? :))

Woman in a Window said...

Sounds like a perfect celebraion. Anything with colour and guacamole...count me in! Enjoy.

Mervat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mervat said...

As an immigrant to a previously foreign country myself, I so appreciate it when people in the community join in multicultural celebrations.

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

You have now given me some ideas for dinner (and don't we all need those!) and for that I am eternally grateful!

Snowbrush said...

My wife is a labor and delivery nurse, which means that she speaks a very specialized version of Spanish that is limited to what women feel during labor.

Katherine said...

And all on the same piece of land! We are rather insular here... we have to get in a 'plane or boat to get a real taste of other cultures...

REread said...

cool ... sounds like a fun holiday! And Mexican food is sooooo delicious, I'm inspired to make enchiladas and put on some Mexican music

Tessa said...

I'm a bit late, but I hope there's still time to wish you a very happy Cinco de Mayo! It sounds wonderful - just the sort of thing I'd enjoy to the max. Hope you post some photos of your day?

Renee said...

Kisses xx and hugs oo today darling Rosaria.

Love Renee xoxo

Kikit said...

Yummy tacos! I'm sure you had fun! Sorry for the late comment.