|Two Muñequitos performing rumba guagancó in their home town of Matanzas. Their kids are now performing in the group. One of them is the daughter Vivian (above), who performs the child Eleggua, just as did when we first met her. The audience adore her child as much audiences had adored Vivian at that age.|
This experience has not been provided for the other travel groups el V's taken to Cuba, for various reasons. But this group is special, because it's the first group el V's brought to Matanzas since the election. Cubans understand hurting and their compassion for USians who are hurting is deep and broad, as a citizenry and as individuals, is deep and broad, as I learned personally, after 9/11, and after being very ill.
|Two of one of the founders' sons, Barbaro and Figurine, dance in NYC.|
While all are hurting badly right now, some are hurting very much more. A significant number of the Travelers in this group are African American women, some traveling with their daughters.
The conclusion of the rituals and ceremonies is the meal of beans, rice, the chicken etc.* The Travelers needed to partake for ritualistic reasons. But a big dinner was scheduled right after this event. So -- Anna ensured that it was just a taste of each of the required dishes for each of them.
As they were eating, one of the Travelers said, "I think this is our Thanksgiving."
You can imagine what was all in those words. As soon as el V repeated them to me, my heart thumped in resonance, and I started to tear up.
Spiritual renewal includes reaching back and up and down to the Ancestors. We know how to do this.
. . . Giving thanks is one of the caminos to spiritual renewal.
* For those who think is terrible, think Christian communion . . . and how much violence has been unleashed for centuries over the argument whether or not it is truly the body and blood of Christ's sacrifice or merely a representation of the sacrifice.