Belated answer, Htmb ~ sorry! Yes, sometimes I don't even bother to go look, as you can tell by my attitude in the OP of this thread. Other times I have the most wonderful fireworks displays bursting right over my patio, and am merely annoyed because it scares my dogs. That works out, though, as when I do look, I get enthusiastic all over again.
On Monday the 1st of August, the last day of Guelaguetza, a friend and I planned to go look at the long stairs leading up to the Guelaguetza auditorium, then go have breakfast at one of the many stands set up around Carmen Alto church during this event. Alas, the blankety-blank teachers were blocking my path to her house and there was a huge state police presence on Crespo Street at the base of the stairs. My friend refuses to cross a picket line, for which I respect her, even though I no longer accept Sección 22 as a true union, which is not to say I support the government's actions. (background infohere)
At any rate, the teachers begrudgingly let me through, although people we met on the way back said there was no longer passage there. So we went to San Pablo Cultural Center instead, which always has something going on. I still wanted to check out the stairs, but went much later and had to swim upstream against the crowds exiting the stadium, as you will see in a bit.
I was totally thrilled by this fantasy flight suspended over Alcalá, the pedestrian street ~
The Cultural Center had a small market of various Oaxacan crafts in progress. For years I've been looking for the perfect pair of classic Oaxacan filigree earrings, and finally found them at a stand there. These objects, shown a good bit bigger than their real sizes, are what drew my eye to the stand ~
After purchasing my earrings, enjoying an excellent cup of coffee, and bidding goodbye to my friend, it was time to retrace my steps back to the steps up to the Cerro del Fortín and thrown myself into the fray ~
Looking up from near the base of the stairs to almost the top. This is the tide I have to buck ~
That's good, Bjd -- thanks. You are probably even now warbling Oaxaca Vives en Mí as you peruse the pictures.
So here we go climbing up, up, up, checking out what's for sale as we go ~
Ates de frutas, different flavors of fruit pastes. I bought some & forgot I had it in my purse until I looked at the pictures to post here ~
I guess the hat vendors were trying to catch buyers on the way up to the auditorium, as hats are one of the give-away items thrown by the performers to the spectators. You can see in the pictures how many people are wearing or carrying several hats ~
See that archway at the top of the picture? That's our objective, as it's the tunnel leading under the highway to the Guelaguetza stadium ~
Took this picture on the way up, but on the way down these nice people let me throw away a plastic cup in their garbage bag. There were precisely zero (-0-) trash containers provided for this flood of people ~
These are pieces of roasted agave, which is used to get the juice from which mezcal is made. The roasted pieces are deliciously sweet, but fibrous. The name of this brand of mezcal is Thousand Wounds ~
Here comes the clean up crew!
and more apples ~
Hooray -- I've made it to the top. Now to go through the tunnel ~
I did a report on this tunnel back at the end of 2013, when the paintings were still fresh. Most of them are still there, although somewhat tired now. Some have been freshened up, and a few things have been painted over the original stuff. Here is the original report, but we're going in again now ~
You can exit the tunnel from either side, this one ~
or this one ~
And now we're on the other side of the highway, looking out over the city ~
Sometime in the past I reported on the boondoggle of the missing auditorium roof. Lo and behold, a new one had been put up the week before I got back from vacation ~
This was the 2nd Lunes del Cerro, so that night was the big finale. I don't know if these dancers had just finished performing or were waiting around for the evening performance ~
Time for me to go back the way I came ~
The crowd has thinned out somewhat ~
This traveling barbacoa stand knows a good venue when it sees one ~
Tacos quickly made to your specifications ~
Just one more food shot to show two fruits that are in season right now, the yellow nance and the green tuna cactus fruit ~
So is that it? You're wondering if I'm through with July for this year. Yes, I am except for one more thing. While perusing the merchandise available on the stairs, I came across something I just had to have, not for me, but for my furry friends. I went back later in the afternoon, taking the mutts to get fitted. They proudly sported their new acquisitions, prancing down the street garnering admiring looks and comments and reducing one woman to helpless laughter. She even took a picture with her phone, looked at it, then cracked up all over again. We like to spread joy where we can. Anyway, yesterday evening I wanted to record their preciousness for this thread. As you can see, except for Darla -- and she begrudgingly -- they were having none of it ~
This is a really fabulous report, but it gives me the impression that nobody except the vendors ever has to work in Oaxaca because everybody else is constantly festivalling around. More seriously, what would you estimate the percentage of out-of-town tourists to be at an event like this, compared to the locals?