Hi everyone – Derek never wanted a traditional memorial service, he wanted a big party – the crazier the better. So that’s what we’re planning for Saturday, July 21 here at the Maywood Manor (our house), and you’re invited. This is a Día de los Muertos celebration for Derek – a holiday that we both loved from our many visits to Mexico.
El Dia de los Muertos (the Day of the Dead) is a day to celebrate and remember the good times that you've had with loved ones who have died. Families build altars and make offerings of food and drink, so that the departed can have something to eat on their journey to the afterlife, while also allowing them to rest in peace. Some families even eat at the grave sites of their loved ones to show that they are still a part of their families.
Mexicans look at death with the same fear as any other culture, but there is a difference. They reflect their fear by mocking and living alongside death. Children play "funeral" with toys that are made to represent coffins and undertakers. Calaveras (skulls) are decorated with bright colors with the name of the departed inscribed on the head. Children carrying yellow marigolds enjoy the processions to the cemetery. At the cemetery, music is played and people dance to honour the spirits.
El Dia de los Muertos has a long history in the Americas. For ancient Mesoamericans, life and death were not two independent states of being. Death did not mean the end of one’s life but rather, through death, new life was created.
The celebration begins when you get here. Stay for the weekend or just a couple of hours – whatever you can manage. The details haven’t been worked out yet, but there will be BBQs, a fire pit, blenders and lots of space to park your RV/tent (we have five acres). Bring lawn chairs and stuff to keep the kids occupied so that we can focus on drinking margaritas. If you need a place to stay that has showers, take a look at the Powell River visitors’ accommodation page here: http://www.discoverpowellriver.com/accommodation/
We are located south of Powell River at 2751 Maywood Road, tel. 604-487-1597, cell. 604-413-2233.
Please pass this invite along to anyone else you think might be interested or that I might have missed. I don’t think I have everyone’s email address.
More updates to follow. Let me know if you’re in or not, and how many family members will be coming. If you won’t know until the last minute, that’s okay too. Last minute is a Merek tradition.
I look forward to celebrating with you,
PS: bring the GOOD tequila and use real limes.