The following day is the real holiday here. A tradition arose from a combination of Mayan and Catholics belief that the spirits of dead relatives can be reached or communicated with by kite. So many people go stand on their families graves and fly kites. One place where this is most popular Santiago Sacatepequez. A long, stretched out city up in the highlands, the cemetery is on the side of a cliff on the edge of town, and the winds are ideal for kite-flying.
|Giant kite flying over the cemetery at Santiago|
Becky's organization has lots of service teams that come down and do work for a week or so, but these groups also like to get out and see the sites. Since it was a holiday and no work, we went with one of these groups and some of her co-workers out to Santiago to be a part of the celebration. It was crowded, but really fun. Many of the kites are so large, the laws of physics must lay down and weep as the kites defiantly find some way to take to the skies. It was kind of weird to be walking in a crowd over dead peoples. Many of the graves had stone or cement tombs, but many also were nothing more than a pile of dirt. Those were the really weird ones.
|An above ground tomb makes a good spot to view or fly kites|
|The Kite Forest|
|An ornate kite exhibited in Sumpango|