I was talking to someone from Kentucky a few days back. It was a rough conversation, he was trying to justify a lot of things that are happening in politics these days and I was trying to be respectful and polite despite the fact.
I mentioned, in an attempt to lighten up the mood that our Christmas Holidays just ended last weekend on the twenty second, with the closing of the Fiestas de la Calle San Sebastian in Old San Juan.
We have the longest holidays in the world because we tied up all the holidays around Christmas and where like “it’s all related!” If we could we would’ve kept it going until Valentine’s day. So the fiestas? Is something like this:
I found this clip this week of this queen dancing and … MONDAY BOOM!
If you notice a lot of African culture in that scene and are wondering whaaaaa, I’ll note for those who might not know, that Puerto Ricans are a delicious mix of taíno (indian natives), Spaniards and Africans.
Side note: it took me many years – well into my collegehood- to come to terms with the fact that in us, there’s both the slaver and the slave. The exterminator and the exterminated. I don’t feel they reside inside me together, a neat ball of coexistence. I feel them compartamentalized, but I accept that. The fact that my Spaniard heritage is very linear and my particular ancestors actually defended Puerto Rican rights – and where persecuted for it- in their time helped me to feel more peace.
African culture is very much within us. Our music, our food, our language. No matter how fair the skin, how light the eyes (and we come in all the shades of the world), we all carry African in us and we can feel that beat in our hearts.
I thought a lot about all this during the weekend. Oh, how my heart ached during the weekend.
This is my try on a pick up. I hope you enjoy the flavor of the celebration in the feet of that woman. I hope you also feel the rebellious winds of her skirt. The soul of her story, a strong beat that couldn’t be tamed by the master. The persistence that makes it possible for us to see today the steps of our ancestors dancing in her feet.
It makes me smile with hope.
And in case you want to see a bit more:
Have a great Monday peeps!