Happy day of the death!

Dia de muertos Cacao tree in Rio de Janeiro

Today we use cocoa seeds mostly for pure indulgence, but before Columbus cocoa was used in Mesoamerica for all sorts of rituals. As cocoa trees grow in the shade they were associated with death and the underworld. According to Kristy Leissle (highly recommendable book: Cocoa), they found archaeological evidence of painted cocoa trees with the faces of dead ancestors, reborn as Theobroma cacao in Honduras.

I’m not sure my ancestors were reborn as a tree, but I do like to use all saints to remember them and their stories. Like my grandparents who emigrated from Austria by boat to Mexico in search for a better future in 1956. Coincidence or not but at that time, my grandfather had received an offer to work in a Mexican chocolate company. (And it is nice to remember that emigration does shift in direction over time)

Feliz día de Muertos! Happy day of the dead.