I Know You Like Me

Monday, November 1, 2010

All Saints Day in the Philippines

That's my grandparents' mausoleum.  It is All Saints Day and remembering the souls of departed loved ones is celebrated in the Philippines every November 1 instead of November 2 which is All Souls Day. 
Our celebration seems normal if you will base it on the photo... well, it is not.  Here in the Philippines, All Saints Day is also the time for families to held reunions, well, with both living and dead relatives.

This photo is  also taken at the memorial park where my grandparents' mausoleum is located.  People go to the cemetery in the morning and gather around their relative's tomb until evening.  Tables are laid with all sorts of foods to cover the three meals of the day.  The most popular foods served during this day are suman (rice packed in banana leaves and cooked through steaming) topped with grounded coconut meat and brown sugar, puto (rice cake), pansit (noodles with stir fried vegetables) and fried chicken.  I bet the most exciting part of the day is during the night especially for children because it is the time to collect candles and make them into different shapes.   It's already a 'tradition' every year during November 1.   I remember when I was kid, my cousins and I would scare each other by telling ghost stories.  After scaring each other, we would visit our other relatives tombs and collect some more candles.

Weird as it may seem, but, that's how it is in the Philippines.  It only shows that Filipinos have close family ties and that we celebrate All Saints Day in a rather happy way because we know that our dead relatives' souls are in a better place than ours.
 
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