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Viviana Alavés pours beeswax on a candle at her family’s shop in Teotitlán del Valle, a town in Mexico’s Oaxaca state. For residents of Teotitlán del Valle, marriage requires one of two things: asking for the bride’s hand before she leaves home or offering an apology for having taken her before asking. In either case, each aunt, uncle and parent of the groom must bring candles to the bride’s parents’ home. There, the bride’s parents will light each candle as a symbol of the good wishes and blessings the family bestows on the marriage, which will take place when the candles run out, approximately one year later.