Monday, November 5, 2007

Day of the Dead

Friday was Dia de los Muertos, Day of the Dead, here in Mexico so during yesterday's visit with Ibis' family, we stopped by his mother's grave. It's been almost ten months since she passed away but only the second time I've visited the cemetery. Flowers covered most of the tombs, some arranged in permanent vases, others jammed in the cut-off bottoms of 2-liter soda bottles.

Her grave is one of the simplest there: a slab of concrete with three inch-deep circles at the top. No headstone; no marker of who lies there. The siblings are still trying to agree what they want as a final memorial to their mother, and how they'll pay for it. We brought a small bucket that fit perfectly in one of the circles and dropped in the white flowers we brought.

(You'll have to excuse me here, I don't know much about flowers. They were the fluffy kind with tons of petals that are easily removed and used for decorating.)

The flowers arranged, Ibis and I sat on his mother's grave with his sister Karla and her son Brian, a beach umbrella blocking the sun. Not much was said, except to keep Brian from exploring and knocking over the flowers on other graves. We stayed for about half an hour, watching other families across the cemetery and the lizards near our feet. When a bull bellowed near our car, we took that as a warning and decided to head back to the house.

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