November 2003 - Santiago, Sacatepequez
 
In Guatemala, On November 1st, people visit the dead to give them a big party right in the cemetery.  Thousands of cemeteries are brightly decorated.  Two, in Santiago Sacatepequez and in Sumpango, each only 10-15 miles from Antigua, are also known for their "Giant kites", "Barrilettes gigantes", that they've made for over 100 years.  Tens of thousands of people go to see them.  We did, too.

Jennifer and Tomas overlooking the barrilettes ...

Santiago Sacatapequez cemetery, like all others in the country, becomes a party for All Saints Day, with pizza, soda, beer, ice cream sellers, people bringing picnics, kids and adults running around launching kites - "barrilettes" ... some small, some mediums and some enormous.  Some flew a bit and crashed, some of the gigantic ones just cannot fly at all.
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Jennifer, Monica & dad, tasting some sweets along the way to see the barrilettes.  There is a lot of food to eat while you go see the kites.

Barbara, Monica and Jennifer, on the right, joining the locals in the custom of sitting on the graves ... a kite is flying overhead.


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The GIGANTIC KITES of Santigao Sacatepequez.  Our district, county, whatever you call it, local administration of Guatemala, is called Sacatapequez.  It is high in the highlands and very interesting.
 
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On the way ... many food and drinks stsnads, this one peeling oranges
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The Che Guevarra kite did not fly much.  Teams, running through the cemetery, holding its long rope, got it aloft a few times, but it was too heavy and came down, into the hands of the waiting people
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People stood atop graves, eating, drinking, flying kites, or just watching
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The Che Guevarra kite did not fly much.  Teams, running through the cemetery, holding its long rope, got it aloft a few times, but it was too heavy and came down, into the hands of the waiting people




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This page was last updated on 11/05/04.