And that was before the party really got started…

Brianna’s second birthday party…

Birthdays are a big deal here in Peru. Brianna’s birthday was actually on June 20, but since I was away at the time we decided to have her party last Sunday. The video was taken before about half of the guests arrived, since somebody forgot to charge the camera’s battery the camera died on us before the party really got started 😦

The party was a blast. I think there were about 10 or 12 kids and 30 or so adults. The clown did a great job entertaining both the kids and adults, ending in a fun “hora loca” (crazy hour). Of course we had surprises, balloons and a piñata for the kids, the mandatory “pollo la brasa” (rotisserie chicken), a bunch of “bocaditos” (snacks) and a yummie cake!

Mamacita worked hard all week to prepare for the party. Next year we’re just doing something simple at the house… but then again, that’s what we said last year too 🙂

Primer cumple de mi wawa

Birthdays are big here in Peru, and our baby’s first birthday was no exception. Our little Brianna Nayaraq had a huge first birthday party, complete with balloons, a clown, a piñata and of course cake, snacks and pollo la brasa.

Abuelo’s birthday

Patricia’s dad, Carlos, celebrated his birthday yesterday. Patricia’s dad and several of his family members played traditional Peruvian folk songs on the guitar, banjo and accordion. We all ate yummie lechon, even Brianna!!!

After a few cervezas papi even danced to traditional Peruvian folk music… bad uncoordinated gringo 😉

Carlos playing guitar

Brianna Nayaraq con su bisabuela

Brianna Nayaraq con su bisabuela

Baby Brianna watching her grandpa play guitar

Happy birthday Peru

July 28 is Peru’s national holiday or Fiestas Patrias, happy b-day Peru!!!

That’s all I’m going to say about the national holiday. Not that we aren’t patriotic, but July 28 also happens to be the birthday of Patricia’s grandmother, “Mama Vicky”, so we celebrate her birthday with the family. If you need pictures or war stories of the Fiestas Patrias, I recommend Barb or Stuart.

As for “Mama Vicky”, the account of her true age varies between 82 and 85. Either way, the experiences in her lifetime are hard for me to even imagine. She raised 8 kids – and sadly lost several more – in the small town of Accha throughout the bad-old-days of terrorism in Peru.

Mama Vicky on her birthday

Mama Vicky on her birthday

My parents are in town for a few weeks, so they got to enjoy the party as well. As usual here in Peru, Mama Vicky’s birthday was celebrated with food, family, beer, wine and Pisco.

4 generations

4 generations

Drinking Pisco Sours

Drinking Pisco Sours

Happy birthday Mama Vicky!!!

Viejo

My birthday was this past Friday. Patricia thinks anyone with living memory of the 1970s is positively antique, so that makes me a viejo (old guy).

That Peruvians have a different concept of age is not really surprising, considering the population in Peru is very young. The median age is in Peru is 26, fully 10 years lower than in the US. One disadvantage is that age discrimination in the workplace is common here. At 35 I would not be considered for many jobs, but that’s not a great loss since working for someone else is often a sad proposition in Peru, with poor wages and working conditions. I think I’ll just make my own luck.

Here’s a few pictures of my birthday. We’re bad with math here in Cusco so we just put one or two candles on the cake, no matter what age. A fun part of the birthday celebration in Peru is that you get to take a “bite” out of the cake after blowing the candles out, and someone gives you a gentle push on the back of your head… that explains the whipped cream on my face 😉

Viejo getting ready to blow out the candle

Viejo getting ready to blow out the candle

After I took a bite from the cake

After I took a bite from the cake

Celebrando mis 21 años…

lista para cantar...

lista para cantar...

Si pues, ayer celebre mis 21 años…pero de vida artistica. que cuantos cumpli? bueno como todas las mujeres dirian… Eso no se le pregunta a una mujer… asi que mi edad queda en secreto.
Como todos los años la pase con mi familia, prepare mis infaltables gelatinas, mazamorra morada, flan, pop corn y otros, yo se que estas cosas son para fiestas infantiles, pero como hace tiempo en mi familia ya no hacemos esto porque mis primos ya crecieron y como siempre me ha gustado comer estas cosas en los cumples, pues no dudo en prepararlos ya sea para mi cumple, la de mis hermanos, la de mi mama y ahora para el de Ward, y yo supongo que lo seguire asiendo por largo tiempo mas.
Algo que si cambiara en las celebraciones de mis proximos cumpleaños es que tendre alguien mas que me dara un abrazo pero no como mi tia, prima, sobrina , mama, hermana o amiga sino que sera mi hija quien este presente en estas celebraciones.

Summary / Translation:

In the best Peruvian tradition we celebrated Patricia’s birthday with food, drinks and family 🙂