A number of special days are approached in drastically different fashions in parts of the world. Celebrating Valentine’s Day in Mexico is consistent with most places that embrace this day of love. This is not a blog about the history of nor the evolution of Valentine’s Day. Simply one of enjoying it!
In Mexico, Valentine’s Day is known as El Dia del Amor y la Amistad, which translates as The Day of Love and Friendship. It’s celebrated on February 14, as it is worldwide.
Unlike most of the country’s traditional celebrations, Valentine’s Day is a mixture of a commercial celebration together with local traditions. It’s not just a day for lovers but also to show appreciation and love for friends.
In Mexico, red roses and chocolate also top lists for romantic gifts on Valentine’s Day. However, giving balloons to someone you love is also very popular, often with “Te Amo” (I love you) imprinted on them.
The color red features prominently throughout Mexico in shops and restaurants in the weeks leading up to Valentine’s Day. They are decorated with red balloons, red hearts, banners, and flowers to celebrate the day of love and friendship.
Valentine’s Day Expressions
Children in Mexican schools often have contests to compose poems to celebrate Valentine’s Day. They attach their poems to balloons. Classrooms are often decorated in Valentine’s Day theme. Parents send homemade treats to school and small gifts are exchanged. Smiles and hugs shared!
Adult platonic friends have dinner or drinks to celebrate. They also exchange gifts, poems, cards, sweets, and more to show their appreciation and care for each other. Friends tell us that gifting a personal keepsake: (book, figurine, photo, etc) with a close friend often takes place.
Our friends share that while at dinner in the home of friends, they see a beautiful figurine on a shelf. They express how much they love it and the host couple starts to laugh uncontrollably. The hosts then explain it’s no surprise our friends like it. It was because our friends gave it to them on Valentine’s Day 2 years earlier. Of course, more laughter and wine ensued.
On the evening of Valentine’s Day, a man arranges for a Mariachi band to stand alongside him outside the home of a woman he declares his love to. Together, they sing and play the songs of love hoping to win her heart.
Valentine’s Day Celebrations
It would not be a Mexican celebration without food by couples or groups of friends with an evening meal. Private homes and restaurants are both popular venues. One is far more challenging than the other!
This is but one of many incredible restaurants in Colima, high on the list for many Valentine’s Day celebrants. Restaurant reservations regularly need to be made weeks in advance to secure your favorite restaurant and/or table. This year due to Covid-19, weeks became months just to get “a” restaurant, let alone a specific table.
How will normal practices take place this year at restaurants? Using cash has been discouraged at some and refused at most places of business. How folks deal with rose-bearing vendors and Mariachi trios is to be seen?
Love is in the Air
Mexicans are a proudly affectionate people. Hugging is commonplace between and one of our favorite aspects of Mexico. We often see folks kissing in public while walking, sitting in parks, shopping and dining. Of course, with our frigid winters, outdoor kissing can easily lip-lock you with your special someone.
We’ve never been to Mexico to celebrate dinner with friends on February 14. It’s a priority to enjoy Valentine’s Day 2022 in Mexico. Please join us!!
¡Feliz día de San Valentín para ti y tu familia!
Happy Valentine’s Day to you and your families!
Acknowledgment and thanks to Lauren Cocking, Northern England Writer24 May 2017 for insights.
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