Dia de la Indepenencia!!! Viva Mexico!

As every single person in the country knows... yesterday (Sept. 16th) was Independence Day in Mexico! The whole country, the entire state and everyone in Tulum was all set for the festivities.

First a bit of history. El Grito! On September 16th Mexicans everywhere take the time to celebrate Mexico's liberation from Spanish control. The Spanish who had came to the shores of Mexico in 1521 began their rule over Mexico and the indigenous Mayan and Aztec civilizations that lived here. Jump ahead to 1810- after much of the native population had been devastated from illness, heavy work load and mistreatment by those that ruled- the seed of revolt began to flourish.

As Spain was taken by Napoleon in 1808, the people within Mexico began to see the opportunity to sever from Spain and gain their independence. In the morning hours of September 16th father Hidalgo and others first rang the bells at a small church at Dolores Guanajuato. The chime of these bells, that night began the Independence War that lasted for over 10 years.

As my husband is from Guanajuato, he loves to always point out to me that Guanajuato is where the Independence started. After the bells rang out, Hidalgo gave orders to his followers to retaliate against every native Spaniard in Dolores.

The same "Cry of Dolores" that was heard that first night can still be heard in every small town at midnight on September 15th. A reminder and an homage to the impulsive yet critical actions of Father Hidalgo and his parishioners that fateful night.

El Grito de Dolores, "Mexicanos, viva Mexico,"

Now that the stage is set... Here in Tulum the festivities were just as they are in every other town. centro was all set with lights that shine in the expected red, white and green. Stages were ready for the wonderful bands that would be going on in the early hours on the morning.

Armed with the kids and an expectation of a patriotic evening, we set out to centro. the kids in their traditional wear all set out to make themselves sick on rides and dulces and agua frescas.

In addition to the festivities in centro there were many wonderful parties all over town. From Ocho Tulum and Om with their VIVA MEXICO parties to Ultra lounge in pueblo. Everyone offering great specials on traditional drinks and food.

We began our night watching the wonderful performances from the classes at "la casa de cultura." I was very impressed with the young ladies and they did a wonderful job. I was very impressed by the traditional bottle dance during which the young lady must dance in a very long dress with a glass bottle on her head.

Although there continued to be wonderful performances on the stage, we strolled over towards the rides and food!!! The kids went immediately to the bounce house. This is a clever contraption basically of 4 large trampolines connected by little slide and a passage way. Well worth the 40 pesos per kid for 10 minutes and I must say a smart business idea. Other then traditional inflatable bounce houses that we are used to that use a ton of energy to operate.

The kids went on a few rides and I watched in horror wondering if they were going to make it off. My son, the crazy one, full of the spirit of Achilles himself, jumped onto the moving carousel ride and then as I ran after him frightened out of my mind--- he dove off!! AHHHH! Ninos!!! But all was well and we had a great time.

The men pretty quickly ran over to find the drinks and in 1 of the largest cups I have ever seen was my margarita on the rocks. Many other options were also available. I do not quiet understand some of the glassware choices and I am not sure what I would do if I saw someone licking the chili and salt from this glass but I am sure it was happening with out my paying attention.

The kids did their best to make themselves sick on rides that went around and around - on cars that went up and down and stuffing themselves with carnival treats.

The festivities in the central park got more and more active as the 11:00 hour approached. The music from the marching band sang out as the marines stepped forward on stage and waved the Mexican flag. The state song of Quinatna Roo rang out among the crowd and was followed by the exhilarating Mexican National Anthem.

The Presidente then stepped forward to recite El Grito. The crowd did as it was supposed to and responded with an animated and lively VIVA!!! After each name was called of the heros who first began the Independence from Spain the crowd grew louder and louder.

After all the "VIVA MEXICO"s were shouted the traditional fireworks began. It was a beautiful site that made the first Independence Day celebration from the newly created municipality of Tulum of total success.

As the mother of 2 young children that were at this point only being held awake by the loud blast of the fireworks above I was the honorary person who got to go home while all the boys continued their adventure.

The next day there was not shortage of celebration. Although the crowds around town and on the beaches were more tranquil from the success of the night before, Dia de la Independencia is in Mexico much the same as in the USA... the perfect opportunity to take the day, celebrate with friends and family that you are in your country... that it is YOUR country... and that you get to be part of such a special place.

We spent our morning at the beach party at Ocho Tulum. The music could be be heard pumping prideful music as we sipped our margaritas and snacked on Ocho's amazing food.

The rest of the day was spent swimming, bbqing, eating, drinking, laughing and just enjoying being Mexican. just as Father Hidalgo would have wanted it I am sure! The pride that has been felt through out Tulum, Quintana Roo and the whole great country of Mexico can be felt everywhere you go.

Viva Mexico!!!


Bob Mrotek said...

¡Viva Guanajuato! Cuna de la Independencia (Cradle of Independence)

Leslie Limon said...

Great post, as usual! I'm going to refer to the first part of this post when one of the kids needs info for a homework assignment. :)

Looks like you and the family had a great time. Viva Mexico!

Oh, but I do have a question...If your hubby is from Guanajuato, how did you guys end up in Tulum?

Tulum Living said...

VIVA MEXCIO indeed. Bob: thanks - I knew there was a name for Guanajuato but I could not remember.

Leslie: I am really excited to visit Guanajuato but my husband knew that the sort of life that we wanted was not going to be found in Guanajuato. I had a friend in Merida so we looked at the Yucatan. Tulum was just a dot on a map that was on the coast. That was all we knew of it. It really worked out well. (KARMA finally pays off!)

Paula said...

WOW..sounds like everyone had a great time. I am surprised the kids were able to stay up that late, but I guess with all the excitement it was easy to stay awake. How great you are experiencing such a different and wonderful culture. Love you

VisitLaManzanilla said...

Wow, much more lively then the celebration here in La Manzanilla! And we had to be at the jardin at 8:00 on the 16th for a desfile (parade), the kids were dragging.

Michele in Playa said...

Psst. We call them ass glasses. I have quite a few in my collection. ;)

Refried Dreamer said...

Glad you guys had an awesome time!!!

My hubby is from Guanajuato as well... and while his whole family is there and we have a home there... I would agree with your hubby, that it might not be the best place to live. (thus, why we're in Guadalajara)

However, if you do have some free time, you definitely need to check out Guanajuato, Guanajuato. It is amazing. Maybe not to live in, but it is an experience to visit. Coming soon is Cervantino. Ask your hubby about it... I checked it out last year... AMAZING. I'll def. be going back.

Anonymous said...

Great pictures and Blog!

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