Celebrating the dead

It might seem a strange choice of title. But it reflects a special day.

The day of the dead or Dia de Los Muertos.

I was planning on visiting the Mexican Embassy today. Merely another event to practice my extrovertness and see some art pieces. And the funny thing? As I was walking towards it, I was even thinking of quitting and do something else. Perhaps not brave the cold and settle at home with a “warm” video game. But thankfully, I persevered. Hah, I am making it sound as if it was some kind of feat of strength.

When I arrived, I wasn’t expecting much. But I was taken aback by the sight and vibe. It was celebrating the dead. And yet, there was no feeling of dread or gloom! It was respectful, beautiful. Animated projections speaking of those who have passed in such beautiful colours and imagery. Portraying what we normally see as spooky or dreadful in a very different light. Skeletons with charm and warmth that surpasses most people you see on the streets.

It was different. And it reminded me of those who have passed from my life. I was almost moved to tears. Manly tears, of course. We wouldn’t have it any other way, would we? Remembering the dead sounds easier to say than do. So many fond memories rush in as you recall the name of those who have left. Beautiful moments that hurt because the people who helped make them are no longer there. Strange how life is sometimes… And yet, here it wasn’t like that. I had a positive feeling. That their souls are in a better place.

But besides speaking with a few of the people, I also saw the poster child, so to speak, of this celebration. La Catrina herself was represented there through many a painting. A stunning woman of a slender frame and makeup giving the illusion her face is that of a skull. One with flowery ornamentations and crown of roses. From what I managed to understand, she is a personification of death. And it was interesting to see the so-called grim reaper in a different light. To see her not as a heartless being who ferries the dead towards a final destination. But as a beautiful creature that simply takes them towards a better place. Maybe like some sort of final reward?

I am a writer, but it’s hard to put into words the feelings I had looking at those paintings and little animations. To say it felt like summer blooming within and birds taking their freedom towards the skies, is colourful. But barely scratches the surface.

Photo source: https://pixabay.com/illustrations/catrina-sugar-skull-day-of-the-dead-2491523/ 


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