It does not have to be the 14th of February to tell someone how much you love them, or what it means to you to be by their side. It also does not have to be this day to tell your friends how much they mean to you and how they make your life livable.
On this St. Valentine’s Day many friends have plans to celebrate their friendship since the 14th of February is not only a day for romantic love but also a day for friends. Today many friends, both among local people and visitors, will get together to toast the ties that bind them.
At the same time the city is filled with gifts. The great majority of the people are buying something for their love in stores that sell chocolates, clothing, flowers, and more. These places are overwhelmed with the number of people coming in to buy something to give to their special someone. You see all kinds of people from all of Cuzco’s social classes.
The great majority of businesses decorate their doors, windows, display cases, and inside spaces with red balloons in the form of hearts and containing the appropriate words for this day: I love you, te amo, te quiero mucho, and other words that couples use to express their sentiments.
The busiest streets of Cuzco–Tres Cruces de Oro, Matara, Cruz Verde, Almagro, etc, fill with a red color. They are made passionate due to the peddlers who take to the streets for this day. They sell red roses, red balloons, cards, stuffed animals, chocolates, and many other gifts for couples.
In the markets the flower section is filled with clients. It is surprising to see how so many people exhaust the supply of flowers today. The caseras sell each rose for S/2 (about $0.75) and bouquets from S/15 to S/20 ($6 – $8 US). If you want to get a good bouquet you have to go very early because by afternoon all the good ones are gone.
On this day couples are seen on all the different plazas of the city showing their affection and giving each other gifts. Some couples prefer something more romantic than simply being in the plaza. They may take a dinner on one of the balconies of the city or in one of the restaurants, or they may go dancing in the city’s discotheques which today charge couples two for the price of one.
Companies such as Backus, the brewing giant that now owns the Cervecería Cusqueña, organize concerts. Many couples and many friends will go to these events where the most popular music groups of the day in Cuzco will perform.
Displays of love are everywhere at any moment of the day. People do not hide their feelings since today is the perfect excuse for many couples to remember they are together and that both parties are important in their relationship.
One does not think that today people suddenly love each other more. I can not believe that. What I am sure about it that on this St. Valentine’s Day sales of items that simplify deep feelings will exceed expectations. Sometimes they are feelings that are not recognized or forgotten but I do not lose faith tha they exist.
For me every day is a special day to surprise someone with a gift, a hug, sweet words. These things are born in the heart and flow whenever one wants. They are the best.