Preparing For The Big Day
To many preparing for this big day is part of the celebration itself. Going out, walking from place to place looking at the magnificent items being sold for this day fill the people up with excitement and momentum. Preparations usually begin around October but for some, like the sellers that have to gather the merchandize, preparation might start earlier. To the people of western culture that preserving everything for as long as possible it may seem strange to put an extreme amount of effort into making a product that will be thrown away and or destroyed. But to the Mexican people, especially the indigenous Oaxacan’s it is not. To them keeping such items for next year’s celebration is absurd, so they start from scratch ever year. Families with a limited budget don’t care about how big the expenses turn out to honor their dead; they’ll get a second job or work things out with the vendor, all they really care about it having a magnificent alter and celebration for their returning family souls. O...
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...singly caring a living person that is pretending to be a corpse. The locals participate by toss fruits and flowers as the “corps” in the coffin casually smiles and shouts out a loud “thank you”. In some places this parade is carried out differently. A fake body is placed in the coffin and used instead of a living person. Different characters are shown in the parade but all are played by men. Another interesting part of this parade is the leading bride. Typically someone, often a male, is dressed as a bride and this bride as well as the priest led the procession. To the villagers marriage symbolizes the beginning of a new life, just like death does. Thus, the “bride” show cased in this parade is used as a tool that represents death.
While these different forms of celebration may seem important, the most important step in this overall festivity is building the altar.
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