Friday, September 19, 2014

Fiestas Patrias


Feliz 18th de Septiembre! or just Feliz Dieciocho! This is the day Chileans celebrate their independence. Back in the day, Chileans fought for emancipation from Spanish colonial rule. The year 1810 was when the war started. A Declaration of Independence was issued in 1818.

I have found Chileans to be proud of their flag, which flies from every house this week, and their country and culture. Chileans celebrate first by taking the whole week off, if they can! There is a lot of eating and partying. Giant tents called fondas are set up in the cities. The fondas are brightly decorated with blue, white, and red. There is traditional foods like empanadas and chicha (a hard cider)and traditional dancing like Cueca ( see our post from last month on this).

At home, the parilla(grill) is fired up for all kinds of meat delicacies like anticucho (shish kebabs), ribs and longaniza which is a sausage.
No fireworks here! That's an American tradition. Though there is a lot of kite flying here in the traditional flag colors ,of course!
And many towns have a rodeo which is the national sport.

The day after Dieciocho is El Día de las Glorias del Ejército or the day of the glories of the military.
The main parade is in Santiago overseen by el presidente, Michelle Bachelet, and other dignitaries.
This picture is of the military parade in the nearby town of Frutillar.

Here is a link to an interesting sight on Dieciocho 

http://www.speakinglatino.com/chilean-independence-day-celebration/

And here is another link to some more info on the military

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_of_Chile

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