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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

La Noche de Nostalgia

Last night, (August 24th) was a country wide party, celebrating "La Noche de Nostalgia" or for you Spanish challenged, "The Night of Nostalgia". Yes, you read that right, "nostalgia" meaning: a longing for something past or far away. In this case the longing is for the fun times and music of the early rock and roll days. It is the same word used for both languages or they just didn't bother to translate the word into Spanish because the nightly fun starts with English, yes the oldies rock and roll music of English speaking/singing musicians.

We have been limping along trying to learn to speak Spanish while the whole country last night was belting out Elvis, Abba and the Beattles songs in English and they all seemed to know the lyrics! I was ashamed to just be humming some of the songs. I've never really been sure of some of the lines. Which reminds me of a dear friend of ours from England, David P. who once said to us that he loved the group the Bee Gees and that his favorite song was "Bald headed woman?" Huh? Yeah, he never knew why they named it that but he liked the song! Well, we had a laugh when we explained the title really was "More than a woman!" So, we weren't the only ones who sometimes just guessed at the murky phrases we couldn't really hear over our radios while driving in our cars!

After 2 years here in Uruguay, we are starting to finally get into the rhythm (Ha ha) of this country. When we first arrived (June), we were here only 2 months when this country wide event happened. We missed doing anything and only read about Montevideo (the Capital) and it's many street parties. We didn't feel bad because we couldn't picture ourselves partying with the masses. The next years' August rolled around and we learned that local neighborhoods also participate. You can read our 2009 blog on our attending the "Oldies Night" at our neighborhood restaurant. We even had to book in advance! It's similar to reserving space during New Years' Eve back in the states.

This year (2010) we are old pros, anticipating the date and planning ahead and this year we were included into one of the many home parties.

There was a full moon last night and we decided to walk to our friends house. It was so bright we had our shadows accompany us. Then we realized we should have brought flashlights as the road was quite pitted with large pot holes and was dark, still we arrived safely. The party started at 8 PM. We old timers only stayed till 1 o'clock in the morning! They closed the party early and it ended at 2 o'clock in the morning (so we were told) quite early for Uruguayos!

It started with Tragos (Drinks/cocktails) as any proper Nostalgia night. I only know "Papa" took care of us and we had special drinks.

Luisa, our hostess (wife of Papa) had many hand-made pizzas ready and waiting to be cooked. We saw our DJ for the night Adrian, who we've met before, using a computer driven DJ program with songs and videos. Someone else brought a sound system and speakers to insure a rocking time. Since the whole country does this, there are no neighbors complaining about the noise or loud music, how fun is that! I was caught by the camera flash but behind me you can see part of a music video playing. Abba's "Dancing Queen" pounding out the beat behind me. "Foot loose", Olivia Newton John and John Travolta from "Grease", The Beattles and even Peter Gabriel (I don't think of him as an oldie but?) all played. Our host and hostess' son-law loves,  "Just an Illusion" by Imagination so that played.

People sang in English, swayed to the music then chairs were pushed out of the way and everyone started dancing! Of course, props always help to bring out the silliness.

As the night wore on people seemed to get even more energetic, conga lines and even a very short number of limbo tries were attempted!

Finally the group did begin to sing well known (to them) classic dance songs in Spanish! Some enthusiasic titles were: "Me vuelvo loco por vos", "Panchango" "Un rubio en avion","Muesa una cancion aqui para cargaria", "Fe aviso, te anuncio" I went around asking everyone what was playing so that next year I can be even more prepared for La Noche de Nostalgia.

P.S., Thank you Papa and Luisa! We had a great time!


Anonymous said...

...sounds like y'all had a real good time!! Wally, did you go in your pyjamas?...:)


Wally said...

No, Neddie. It was an "out of pajama" experience.