Remember the Mule
Topic: Special Days
Apparently, today, 27th April, is "Matanzas Mule Day". Never heard of it? Well, neither had I until I saw it on the Internet. Matanzas is a town in Cuba, (on the northern coast), about sixty miles away from Havana. It boasts one of the finest beaches in the world. Throughout the region old African based customs have been passed on from generation to generation, so the area is also renowned for the richness of its AfroCuban folklore.
The Spanish word "Matar" means "to kill" so how did the area get its name? When Cuba was the home of indigenous Indians living in an Indian town called Yucayo, near Guanima Bay, a Spanish ship with thirty men and two women was shipwrecked nearby. These poor unfortunates were then attacked and killed by the Indians - hence, Matanzas, or The Killings. Later, in 1693, the Spanish founded the city of San Carlos and San Severino of Matanzas, now known as Matanzas, on the site of Yucayo.
One day during the Spanish-American War in 1898, the United Stated bombarded Matanzas. What did they destroy? Well, only one poor old mule. So, today, the Cubans remember that poor unfortunate equine doubtless giving thanks that no human being perished on that day!
Do you know the difference between a mule and a hinny? The British Mule Society will tell you all you everything you ever wanted to know about this intelligent animal. They are certainly much more complex creatures than I ever realised.