Mariachis and Mexican Independence

Saturday night was Mexican Independence Day. In Mexico, locals usually celebrate with house parties or maybe going out to a bar, and many go to their city’s main square to take part in the festivities.

This year, Jorge and I started the evening at our friend Tomas’ house. We were expecting a small gathering of friends, but when we got there, the entire front patio was set up for a large party. Apparently it was Tomas’ sister-in-law’s birthday, so there was a huge double celebration.

All those tables were full an hour later.

They had set up a giant screen on the side wall to show the night's boxing match.

Centerpieces with the Mexican flag and traditional Yucatan candies

Soon after our arrival, a mariachi band showed up to surprise the birthday girl! So much fun.

Many of the party hosts and guests came dressed up in traditional Mexican and Yucatecan clothing. I was too shy to get pictures of them all, but I did manage to get these:

I loved this little girl dancing to the mariachi band in her traditional Yucatan huipil dress.

This little girl in the charro outfit was the best of the night! (She was too shy to let me get a good pic of her)

We did “El Grito” at 11 pm (when everybody across the country shouts “Viva Mexico”!), then made our way to another friend’s house for another party. We were up until 2 am chatting around the table with our friend Raul’s family, then we headed home early because Jorge had to work at 7 am. Overall it was a laid-back, very Mexican night!

How did you celebrate El Quince de Septiembre? (Mexican Independence Day)

Playa del Carmen on Mexican Independence Day

After the Mexican show on Wednesday, Jorge and I got together with some friends and we drove down to the city of Playa del Carmen for the night to continue celebrating Mexican Independence Day.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with Playa del Carmen, it’s about 40 minutes down the coast from Cancun. It has this great pedestrian street that runs parallel to the beach, called Quinta Avenida. This charming avenue is filled with amazing bars, restaurants and shops. It’s possibly my favorite place in the world.

We missed the Grito at 11 pm because we were in the car, but as we were pulling into Playa del Carmen, we did get to see some fireworks from the car window:

We parked the car and began to walk around Quinta Avenida. It was packed.

There were many interesting characters all around:

We decided to go to one of our favorites, Guanatos.

Then we spent the rest of the evening just out on the street… because that’s where the party was anyway!

I think these people had the right idea…

After awhile, we decided to just grab our cooler from the car and find a street corner to party on.

We spent awhile hanging out and enjoying our drinks (except for me, because strawberry Caribbean Cooler is nasty, FYI), then decided to head home around 3 am. Fun night with amazing friends! I love Playa del Carmen ­čÖé

My friends in their Mexico soccer jerseys… and unpatriotic Jorge.

Hubs and me

Me with Viri, one of my best friends ­čÖé

Viva Mexico, Cabrones!

Today, September 15, is a special day in Mexico.

Tonight at midnight, we start to celebrate Mexico’s Independence Day, September 16.

In the Zocalo (Main Square) of Mexico City, the president will gather with masses of people to give “El Grito” (“The Cry”) at midnight. They’ll be joined by Mexicans all over the country and the world watching them on TV.

El Grito goes something like this (can be changed a bit):

¡Viva la Independencia Nacional!; (Long live Mexican Independence!)
┬íVivan los h├ęroes que nos dieron Patria!; (Long live the heroes that gave us our Fatherland!)
┬íVivan los h├ęroes que nos dieron libertad!; (Long live the heroes that gave us freedom!)
¡Viva Hidalgo!; (Long live Hidalgo!)
¡Viva Morelos!; (Long live Morelos!)
¡Viva Allende!; (Long live Allende!)
┬íViva la Corregidora!; (Long live the Corrector… famous woman of independence)
¡Viva Aldama! (Long live Aldama!)
¡Viva Guerrero! (Long live Guerrero!)
¡Viva Mexico!;
¡Viva Mexico!;
¡Viva Mexico!

So tonight, every Mexican will be at some bar, nightclub or house party with family and friends drinking some beer and screaming as loud as they can. Should be fun!

Google's Mexican Independence Day design! Love it!

This year is especially awesome because it’s Mexico’s bicentennial celebration! We’re all very excited.

I don’t work tomorrow, but I’ll get back to you guys on Friday to let you know how my Mexican Independence Day went.

I’ll also be back later today with some awesome bicentennial videos! (Seriously, they’re awesome.)

If you want to read up a little more on the history of El Grito, check out Wikipedia’s article.

**Update: Tropical Storm Karl is threatening to ruin tomorrow’s day off for Mexicans (and me!) throughout the Yucatan Peninsula.