Vodou Party

Caribbean Blog, vodou party www.oceantrader.coIt was Christmas Eve and we were invited bayside to a vodou party. Not really knowing what a vodou party was all about made the idea more appealing. Here was an opportunity to be exposed to part of the Haitian culture that is very private to most people you meet in Haiti.  I suspect even the people that claim to be devout one way or the other know about vodou, or are even involved in vodou rituals.  It was an artist we met in Northern Haiti that extended the invitation.  He made it clear that most everyone in the village would be there.

There was in fact more than one vodou party, but my artist friend made sure we knew how to find the right one.  I asked if I could bring some camera gear and he assured me that I would not be discouraged from taking photos.  As I said, I had no idea what to expect. We arrived at the vodou party a bit later than had been originally planned, but that was not a factor.  The party was in full gear and people were enjoying themselves. The first thing that struck me as unique was the party areas were mostly illuminated by candlelight.  There were a variety of earthy, but pleasant scents in the air.  These were unlike any incense I had experienced before.  All the partygoers were brightly and attractively dressed. Many were dressed in all white outfits with matching white head scarfs. There was an area were you could deposit donated food or drink, and there was also a large bowl where you could deposit a few hundred Gourde. There were two tables of assorted foods and pastries, and yet another two tables with drinks including rum and beer.

Caribbean Blog, Haitian Artist www.oceantrader.co

Did we experience any vodou rituals?  Well yes, but to the uninitiated the drums alone were too intoxicating to have allowed empirical observation.  There were continuous duets between drum groups.  One group would lead-in with a particular cadence only to have it lifted and reinvented by the other drummers.  The drumming and singing was the most intense I have ever experienced.  The dancers were ecstatic and mesmerized by the drumming, guitars, tambourines, cowbells and flutes. Another notable feature of this vodou party was the absence of any commercial music. For someone who does not speak Creole and has marginal knowledge of the Haitian culture, this party was not an event that could be categorized or explained away.   We made more friends, had a few drinks and we were able to wonder through the thickening crowd to the balcony which was right on the water. It was an experience we will not forget.  It was certainly the better plan compared to other alternatives for that night.  I will have to remember to take more photos if I get another invitation to a vodou party.  There were other features of the vodou party, but you will have to find your own vodou party to experience those.  * Photo of the Haitian artist –  Image © www.oceantrader.co, Haiti Travel Blog

Comments

  1. You should have been in church attending Mass you heathens! Hell and damnation to you!

    • I don’t go near any churches because of retards like you..and if someone tells me they are Christian I make a hasty detour away from them. Hypocrite!

  2. Drywick, a voodoo party sounds like a new kind of inter-dominational worshipping experience. At least the priest won’t be the only one sipping the could stuff 🙂

  3. Buggzee says:

    OTC mirrors my strong disgust for the bible thumpers and fony Jesus freakers that stand by and do not give witness to the real injustices of our planetary existence. Drywick I will not join your racist crusade against other religious philosophies that do not feature the imagry of a long haired European with a beard. If “Mary” did wear a scarf over her head she was probably a Muslim.

    • Unreal. You guys playing with fire. I like the story. The religious nut needs to stay in church where he might be safe. LoL!

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