Thursday, October 22, 2009

Feliz Halowen

Chedraui Chrismas store
On the Chedraui lot there sits a Christmas store, complete with pictures of snow and snowflakes

As you may know, I teach English to a group of preschool children. My time with them is between 11:30 and 12:30 every weekday.

They have a regular teacher from 9 a.m. to 11:30. Their teacher is Lolita, and the classroom is really more her's than mine.

To get to the children's class I walk down a hallway, at the end of the hallway there's a gate. Last week, on the gate there hung a store bought decoration that consisted of an orange pumpkin and a black witch and the words "Feliz Halowen."

When I entered the room Lupita was busy decorating the classroom with streamers, paper pumpkins, and skeltons.

I asked her about Halloween. She told be in Mexico they do not celebrate Haloween, she was decorating for Dia de los Muertos.

I mentioned that I was acquainted with Dia de los Muertos because I was in Mexico last year at this time.

I showed her the decoration she'd hung on the gate. "Que es Norte American," she said.

"Pero. . . las letras es diferente in ingles," then I gave her the English spelling of the word.

I have several songs that teach the number one to five in English. One of them is called "Five Little Snowmen." I decided not to use this song since I didn't think it was culturally appropriate. However, I was told these children, mostly Triqui, who have never left the city of Oaxaca, are well acquainted with snowmen.

Oaxaca never sees snow at Christmas. Where Jesus was born and lived there was never snow. Yet, here in the tropics Christmas and snow go together like . . .love and marriage?. . . horse and carriage?

Last year in Chihuahua I told one of the children I was teaching that the North Pole is in Canada. Therefore, Santa must be Canadian, and then I kept my fingers crossed hoping his mother or father wouldn't become angry with me.

I think Lolita took the Feliz Halowen decoration down. But, the pumpkins remain. I haven't said anything, but I'm wondering if pumpkin are part of the Day of the Dead tradition.

I don't think so.

1 comment:

Jan said...

I wonder about the pumpkins too. I love this holiday and the traditions here in Mexico! Do your students dress up?