By Jennifer Calderon


Jarana dancing in Yucatan is a matter of great importance. I was just this past weekend at the Sunday dance in the “Pueblo Mágico” of Valladolid, January 15th, 2017; and it was perfect. People in this small urbanity gather on Sundays to dance the night away. Some of them, you can tell, await with excitement for this event during the whole week.




Sunday night arrives, the women look all different and all beautiful, with their long colorful skirts or tight blue jeans, necklaces and rings, some dress in flat leather sandals, others instead choose short heals for the special occasion. Most men put on their always fresh and classy “guayaberas”, making them look as handsome as ever, necklaces and rings apply here to, some of them even add a fancy little hat to the event, which they wear like a crown. It all depends on the personality. In the video below you can see a sample of this type of events, with music by Bombay Bicycle Club.





There are many members that form the band, the one hogging the microphone is eloquent and has a distinctive warm yet strong voice. The rest knows exactly all the song lyrics and play confident and happy, I see a Cuban fellow among the drummers. This kind of dances are nothing like a school ball were no one wants to join or initiate the moves on the floor. Dancing is a beautiful way we have to express ourselves, as each step screams thousands of words.




While dancing the air is filled with tropical vibes and stress-free ambience, dark hair and toasted skin dominates the centric street. Stone ground, warm lights and humid night, these components mixed together are the formula of the setting in which this charming tradition unfolds. The feet and waists move vigorously to the rhythm of the tune, the cheeks flush and the eyes look straight ahead with an indifference expression plastered in the faces, nothing is corrupted.




At these dances your social status doesn’t matter, neither the relevance of your family name, your height, your weight, the way you dress and express yourself verbally to others on a daily basis, nothing of that matters because, everyone that gathers around the government palace and first sits on those little black chairs knows that they’ll end up having a really great time, that they will turn and twirl, accompanied or by their selves.




For me it was an honor to have witness and to have been part of that special night, which is now just a little sparkling star that forms part of their everyday life.




Adriana Martín