Categories

A sample text widget

Etiam pulvinar consectetur dolor sed malesuada. Ut convallis euismod dolor nec pretium. Nunc ut tristique massa.

Nam sodales mi vitae dolor ullamcorper et vulputate enim accumsan. Morbi orci magna, tincidunt vitae molestie nec, molestie at mi. Nulla nulla lorem, suscipit in posuere in, interdum non magna.

Mexican Birthdays—Mine!

Mexican Birthdays—Mine!

I will never get used to "mordidas."  Omar and Tochi laugh because they know I'm being a good sport..

I will never get used to "mordidas." Omar and Tochi laugh because they know I'm being a good sport..

We love birthdays–and anniversaries and graduations and Fridays.  Any reason to get together!

August 16, 2007

Any excuse for a party.  We just love to get together with family and friends in Mexico, especially on birthdays.  And with a big family, you can count on a birthday practically every week of the year.

One nice thing about parties here is that family and friends mix effortlessly.  When we invite friends they often bring a sister or their mother or a cousin.  Omar and I count as friends the mothers and fathers of most of our buddies.  Iris, especially, always arrives with her Mom, her aunt, and a couple of cousins in tow.  Tochi’s parents are great friends.

Piñatas often appear strung above children’s birthday parties, Disney princesses and lime-green Shreks to be clubbed to pieces by the little angels.  And everyone sings “Las Mañanitas,” which puts our lame Happy birthday to you (x3) to shame.  “On the day you were born the birds are singing, the moon has gone to bed so wake up to the dawn…”  (Wildly paraphrased, but accurate as to tone.)  Very nice.

Years ago, I had been in Mexico about 10 months before my birthday rolled around.  I didn’t think anything of it, and was surprised when Pepe, my former apartment-mate, asked me to meet him in the park at 10pm.

At 10:30 and still alone, I was just about to call it a night when Pepe came running out of the shadows and dragged me to a little upstairs restaurant.  I think every Mexican I had ever met was crammed inside.  I got so many kisses I didn’t have to wash my face for a week.

A long chocolate cake appeared, and was placed before me.   Pepe explained that I had to take a small bite of the cake—without using my hands– before it could be served.  “You’ve got to be kidding” I told him.  Who wanted a piece of cake I’d been knawing on?  But everyone was so nice, and so insistent that I take a “Mordida,” that I finally ducked down and sank my teeth into some chocolate frosting.

And someone put their palm on the back of my head and shoved my face into the cake.

Ah, cruel hoax!  I thought these people liked me!  How foolish I was—they just wanted to squash my Gringo snoz into a gooey pastry.  What was next—a pie fight?

I came up, red and sputtering and covered with cake, doing a dukes up Sugar Ray Robinson imitation in chocolate blackface.  I was as pleased as a cat in the shower.

My friends were aghast.  It never dawned on them that I didn’t know about the custom of mordidas—everyone from babies to gramma bit the birthday cake.

Even when it was explained to me it was tradition and I was feeling embarrassed, I still didn’t like the custom.  I was taught not to play with food.

Flash forward to my last birthday, this February.  Omar’s parents, aunt and uncle, and grandparents came, Iris brought her mother, of course Tochi was there, and our neighbors Silvia and Pablo and their kids and Ceci and Pablo, and great friends Armando and Mario.  Omar’s mother made mole by hand on the metate stone, and we had a fabulous meal.  And when the cake came out, I knew just what to do.  I smiled, exclaimed how pretty it was, and mashed my face into it.

You can’t buck custom.

Dan and Omar

Omar's Mom stirring her home-made mole.  The green romeritos will be mixed in soon.

Omar's Mom stirring her home-made mole. The green romeritos will be mixed in soon.

...Along with tortas de camaron, made of dried, ground shrimp.  The dish is out of this world.

...Along with tortas de camaron, made of dried, ground shrimp. The dish is out of this world.

Ceci and Pablo came.  It gets cold in February, as you can see.

Ceci and Pablo came. It gets cold in February, as you can see.

Silvia, Pablo, and Montse came too.

Silvia, Pablo, and Montse came too.

As well as our great friends Mario and Armando.

As well as our great friends Mario and Armando.

I've known Armando since my first Mexican birthday, years ago.  His parents once asked me how is Armando's English, and I thought I was being nice when I said "About the same as my Spanish."  They laughed and laughed.  "That bad, huh?"  We've both improved.

I've known Armando since my first Mexican birthday, years ago. His parents once asked me how is Armando's English, and I thought I was being nice when I said "About the same as my Spanish." They laughed and laughed. "That bad, huh?" We've both improved.

pixelstats trackingpixel
(Visited 403 times, 1 visits today)

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

  

  

  

Categories

A sample text widget

Etiam pulvinar consectetur dolor sed malesuada. Ut convallis euismod dolor nec pretium. Nunc ut tristique massa.

Nam sodales mi vitae dolor ullamcorper et vulputate enim accumsan. Morbi orci magna, tincidunt vitae molestie nec, molestie at mi. Nulla nulla lorem, suscipit in posuere in, interdum non magna.