We just returned from trick r´treating. Our little witch scored some sweets Mexican style. Locals don´t go door to door here in Durango. Gangs of kids head down to the center of town and hustle the store fronts for candies. The thing to do is yell, “!Queremos Halloween!” and open your bag in the proprieter´s face. Talea got the hang of it right quick. We stayed close to the Plaza de Armas, in front of the Catedral Menor, and hit the stores within a one block radius. By the time we got back around to the front of the plaza, Talea had a few hand fulls of dulces, and a belly full of icecream.
The plaza itself was all dressed up for the Day of the Dead celebrations this week, which is celebrated on Wednesday. It was filled with families and their little spooky children. The evening was cool and filled with music, the smells of all kinds of delicious food, and people milling about. In the center of the plaza was a two-story-tall altar set up to commemorate Pope John Paul, a recent promenant defunct. In front of the giant pictures of the prior Pope were many items found on the traditional Day of the Dead alter: Pan de muertos (bread for the dead), water, booze, candles, candy, coffee, booze, skeletons, and other neat stuff, plus booze. There were smaller kiosks set up around the plaza that explained the tradition and contained more skeletons, coffins, and the like.
A good website to find out more about this beautiful holiday:
We´ll return to the Plaza de Armas on Wednesday, after we visit the cemetary. Folks tell us the cementary will be jammed with familes celebrating deceased family and friends. Flowers, mariachis, and food are apparently a part of the event. We´ll let you know later this week.