As winter was fast approaching, it was time for us to head to a warmer climate, with all the CV-19 restriction and lockdowns coming back we decided to leave sooner than later, leaving the last week of October, destination base would be again Progreso.
Progreso is located in the Yucatan just north of Merida. We like Progreso as it has a nice mixture locals and expats (both permanent and temporary). We slotted into the community socially and took up our position playing Pickle Ball most mornings before the day became too hot.
We had no sooner settled into our accommodation for the winter when it was time to celebrate ‘Day of the Dead’ (Dia de Murtes).
The Day of the Dead (Día de Muertos or Día de los Muertos) is a holiday traditionally celebrated on November 1 and 2, though other days, such as October 31 or November 6, may be included depending on the locality. It largely originated in Mexico, where it is mostly observed, but also in other places, especially by people of Mexican heritage elsewhere.
Although associated with the Western Christianity Allhallowtide observances of All Hallows Eve, All Saints Day and All Souls Day it has a much less solemn tone and is portrayed as a holiday of joyful celebration rather than mourning.
The multi-day holiday involves family and friends gathering to pay respects and to remember friends and family members who have died. These celebrations can take a humorous tone, as celebrants remember funny events and anecdotes about the departed.
Traditions connected with the holiday include honouring the deceased using Calavera and Tagetes Erecta, known as cempazúchitl, building a Home Alta called Ofrenda with the favourite foods and beverages of the departed, and visiting graves with these items as gifts for the deceased.
The celebration is not solely focused on the dead, as it is also common to give gifts to friends such as candy sugar skulls, to share traditional pan de muerto with family and friends, and to write light-hearted and often irreverent verses in the form of mock Epitaph dedicated to living friends and acquaintances, a literary form known as “Literary Calavera”. (Wikipedia)
There was also a ‘Dia de Murtes’ Fancy Dress party at one of the local bars ‘La Genuine’ which many Expats patronize.
The local children also dress up, although some have up to date costumes.
We had several visitors over our time here, firstly, Victoria our daughter visited over the Christmas period. Then the first week in January we had Stewart’s friends visit for three weeks from England, one of which he has known since10 years old (Gary). Then finally in mid-February our friend Jillian visited from Alberta for a couple of weeks.
Next up was Christmas and a party for New Years.
While here we met many wonderful people, both local and expat where we all intermingled having some fun times. Two of which we spent a lot of time with, both locally and touring to various locations, these were Ken & Nat.
We went to Merida may times for various reasons including Site Seeing, Shopping and refreshments.
One weekend we spent a night in Merida to attend a Hash. Catherine and our children first went Hashing in Malaysia (where Hashing originated) while Stewart was working in Malaysia. This would in fact be Stewart’s inaugural Hash. Ken & Nat had also previously Hashed.
The Hash House Harriers (HHH or H3) is an international group of Non-competitive running social clubs. An event organized by a club is known as a Hash or Run, or a Hash Run. A common “Denominal verb” for this activity is Hashing, with participants calling themselves Hashers. Male members are referred to as Harriers, which females are known as Hariettes.
The Hash is humorously known as A Drinking Club With A Running Problem, with the preferred beverage of consumption being Beer. (Wikipedia)
The Hash would start at a Hasher’s residential house in Merida where libations were the first order on the list.
Now it was time to Hash, or at least the walking/running part.
Our friend Tim who play’s Pickle Ball also owns a Bar/Restaurant. He had a whole line-up of famous band impersonators lined up over the winter playing at the restaurant, there was Elton John, Fleetwood Mac, The Eagles, ABBA, Eric Clapton, Blues Brothers, Alan Jackson and Patsy Cline.
We visited Celestun for a couple of days with Ken & Nat, this is a small town on the Gulf of Mexico located on the west coast. This little town could be the next ECO tourist destination.
While here, we booked a boat tour of the inside waterway to see the wildlife.
This is ‘Oyo de Agua’ (Eye of Water) this is a Fresh Water Supply just bubbling out of the ground.
We also had a couple of very nice sunsets.