In most Latin American countries, Christmas is the most significant fiesta, or holiday, to be observed, and not just with a day off from work but a truly festive sentiment across the community – a sentiment that remains deeply embedded in our soul as Latinos migrate to the U.S. and raise our families here.
But Navidad, or Christmas, takes a back seat to Noche Buena, celebrated Dec. 24, where Latino families gather for a tremendous feast and an open-door celebration, where extended family and friends traipse from home to home to deliver good wishes and gifts. It is a “parranda” similar to the caroling customs enjoyed in the U.S., except Hispanics are much louder. And there’s less singing – actually, no singing, just lots of joy and cheer. Delivered loudly. With a healthy dose of adult libations. The children are thrilled to receive the many gifts from each visiting family while the adults partake in stories of days’ past. Glorious!
Amigos, Feliz Navidad and much prosperity and health in the new year!
*This article was originally posted on The Daily Record.