In many countries in Latin America, it is a traditional custom to celebrate a girl's 15th birthday party in a very fancy and lavish manner. This celebration traditionally marks a girl's coming of age, such as the American "Sweet Sixteen", and afterwards she is considered a young woman who is now ready to assume more responsibilities.
Quinces may seem like all fun and dance and food, but there's something about them that allow me to obtain so much pride in my roots. I didn't have the privilege of having a quince for myself, but the plenty of times I have attended them, I was in awe at all the hard work put in to make the event so grand and so memorable.
It is those little things that remind me of how proud I am to be a Mexican, and how all the things that my family members accomplish together completely represent the bond and unity we hold within one another.
-- Lupita Villarreal