Elana Safronsky, Managing Editor
Tuesday, May 5, 2009 10:54 AM EDT
It's Cinco de Mayo! Happy happy to all of you who have enough spirit to pick up the party gauntlet. In honour of Mexico (it needs a little love right now), I thought I'd share with you a most embarrassing exposee of my ignorance. Also, because I think possibly, I may not be the only one to have ever made this mistake....
I recently got back from a two-week vacation on the Mayan Coast of Mexico. Yes, in the midst of the Swine Flu craze, and yes, everyone is fine. (It was as if it was happening in Canada, to be honest. No sign of it where we were.) But that's not the point -- I think everyone's had enough of flu news.
While there, my little girl turned two. So we decided to have a party. I have some friends there and so was able to gather a little crowd. For the party, I bought a piñata. Always wanted to, and thought this to be the perfect occasion.
My girlfriend and I went to the store and picked out the flashiest piñata we could find, and when the man at the store was getting it down for us, he gestured toward the top of the piñata and said something in Spanish. I didn't understand, and in fact was WAY too excited to get the big, shiny star home to listen.
So we have the party on the beach. It's a pretty cute, humble little set-up and everyone is having a good time.
There, in the middle of the photo is the star piñata.
The kids however, simply cannot get their attention off the hanging star piñata hanging of the tree, just waiting for its beating. Not to drag it out, I say, let's get to it!
Everyone has a go!
This is my question for you all, on this very honourable day for the country of Mexico: Am I the ONLY ONE who didn't know that a piñata doesn't come with the candy ALREADY IN IT???
That's right! You got it! After all the anticipation, longing sideways glances, and quite the beating (which actually got a bit ugly as the men folk had to get all "aggravated assault" on it to even get the piñata to crack), IT WAS EMPTY!!!
The empty piñata is there on the left, and there I am on the right, crying from laughing so hard at myself, with my little girl bearing witness to my shame.
No, I wasn't trying to teach the kids a lesson about what my childhood may have been like in Russia. I simply didn't know, in my Gringo ignorance -- that's right, I said it, and if there was ever an appropriate time to use this quasi-offensive slang, this is the time -- that the candy is sold separately, just like toys and batteries. The man at the store tried to warn me -- in Spanish -- by showing me the hole through which the candy gets inserted.
So, a note for your Cinco de Mayo party planner: if you're going to buy a piñata, THE CANDY IS NOT INCLUDED.
AM I the only one? Anyone else have a good piñata story? Ever actually purchased a piñata?