Kites in Guatemala - level 3
In Guatemalan culture the Day of the Dead is a time when the worlds of the living and dead mesh together, and spirits will return to earth from heaven.
To commemorate this day, Guatemalans fly handmade giant kites outside cemeteries which are said to carry the messages tied to their tails up to the spirits of their loved ones in heaven.
The tradition of flying kites goes back over 110 years in Guatemala and has become a major tourist attraction.
“Guatemala is very folkloric, so you need to go out and discover because every corner has many really beautiful places. This is what I like most about Guatemala, going to all corners and getting to know its traditions, how they’re evolving because they’re really evolving. This is what I love, the richness of the country.”
Preparations for the Day of the Dead start 40 days before November the 1st as young people gather to start making the huge kites, a practice which has its roots in ancient Mayan culture.
The kites are flown until four in the afternoon when they come down and the families gather at home to wait for the arrival of the spirits of their loved ones.
Difficult words: mesh (become one), commemorate (do something to show that you remember something), folkloric (sticking with traditions), roots (origin), gather (get together).
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