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Today is a national holiday in Ecuador, “El Grito de Independencia” (“The First Cry of Independence.”) It was the first attempt at independence against the Spain reigned by Joseph Bonaparte.
For many years I regretted the lack of importance given to this day by the kids of my generation. Deep inside of me, I wish we would show the same patriotism like the Americans when they celebrate the Fourth of July.
But at the same time I accepted that it was confusing to have to celebrate an effort that was not successful. We didn’t get the ultimate objective so why to commemorate an event that actually failed?
After I became a mom and felt the strong urge to start introducing Ecuador’s important events to my kid; I finally did my homework about August 10. I am glad I did because it changed forever how I saw this day and taught me one thing or two about the meaning of success.
So, yes, August 10, 1809 uprising in Quito miserably failed. However, the event marked the beginning of a series of wars that would bring the eventual independence of other neighbor cities. In other words, it was August 10 happenings what inspired or pushed other places to fight for freedom.
August 10 is a day where we get to celebrate the determination, the courage and the heroism. It teaches me that success is subjective, and is not always measured by reaching the ultimate goal; success is fighting about what you believe in.
Although Quito had to wait till May 24, 1822 to be finally independent, I think that August 10 was indeed a successful day. It was the beginning of the end of the Spanish dominance in the area now called Ecuador. The uprising was one of the first ones in the continent, and planted seeds of independence in other lands. Yay for 10 de Agosto!