Several alert readers have brought it to my attention that after last Friday’s column about May holidays I may have missed a few events that are coming up. That said, let’s dive right in to the chaos.
First off, Monday is the popular Cinco de Mayo holiday that is a reasonable excuse for us Gringos to partake in a fiesta of tequila, Chiquitas and other Mexican treats.
Contrary to popular opinion, Cinco de Mayo is not Mexican Independence Day. The actual Independence Day south of the border is observed on September 16, so mark that one on your calendar. Instead, Cinco de Mayo is a commemoration of the battle of Puebla, a battle fought on May 5, 1862, when an overwhelmed Mexican Army led by General Ignacio Zaragoza Sequin defeated the French forces in the city of Puebla. Instead of calling it “The Battle Won by General Ignacio Zaragoza Sequin”, they decided to shorten it to “Cinco de Mayo”. That name fits better on the calendar. Patriotism, unity and food, that’s what it’s all about. The holiday is not celebrated worldwide, like Christmas, Easter or Secretary’s Day. Instead it’s more like a regional celebration like Oktoberfest, Chinese New Year and Personal Assistant’s Day.
Observed in the U.S. and Mexico, festivities include parades, piñatas, music, dancing in the streets and a 50/50 raffle. And of course, the food. This May 5 hire a mariachi band and invite friends and family over for a Cinco de Mayo fiesta.
The list includes some helpful recipes that will delight the masses who congregate in your backyard.