Her motto, selected I suppose by the yearbook editors, was "Still waters run deep." This remained true as I knew her. She was a ruthless de-clutterer, and I only got this photo last month by stopping by my home town museum where they have a collection of old yearbooks. She was apparently on the vamp side in the 20's, not one of the nice churchgoing girls.
Her only child was my father, who passed away this year, and I'd post a photo of him if I had one. Bless them both.
There's a book there that I'll get around to after the statute of limitations expires. Well, a short story anyway.
Bjd, when you come here you have to eat at least one chapulín. They say if you do, you'll be sure to return to Oaxaca. They are quite tasty, although I admit I'll only eat the teensy ones, so I'm not noticing that they're bugs.
Lola, so kind -- thank you! And many thanks for considering this thread worthy of your tributes to your grandmother and your father. Yes, your grandmother does seem to have had "It", and your description of her character makes me think your apple didn't fall far from her tree.
So, retracing my steps back from the market, here I am on the alameda side of the zócalo ~
I'm following a costumed group of young women, trying to get a good picture ~
They pause to pose in front of the cathedral, as I'm not the only one wanting to snap them ~
On my way home, I see that this banana tree has hitched a ride ~
I went back out later in the afternoon, at the usual time my dogs get an outing. Not to make excuses for myself, but you all should know that the following pictures were not only taken in the gloaming, but also one-handed, with three little mutts pulling at their leashes from my other hand.
An altar in the superette backed up to its front window ~
As is usual during a festival time, there is a long pavilion set up near the northern end of the pedestrian street with regional crafts for sale. It is exceptionally nice this time, with other states represented along with Oaxaca ~
There were two small sand paintings on the midway ~
We were in an island of relative calm in front of Santo Domingo, but that didn't last. There were crowd sounds and music coming up the street, so I went to meet it.
It was one wave after another of little-kid schools' parades. The teachers (mothers?) leading the pack seem to be seriously reconsidering their career choices. Also, doesn't naming a school something that sounds like "dolt" seem like a bad idea?
Poor Harley. He hates band music with trumpets. As yet another parade came along with its blaring music, he dug his little front feet in and refused to move. I picked him put and deposited him on a step, where he enjoyed having some kids pet him. All three dogs stayed pretty quiet as I videoed the parade, but ran out to investigate when a dog dressed as a tick went past. Try to imagine four solid days of this music and you'll have an idea of how the poor little pooch felt ~
Enough is enough! I snapped these last few pictures, then took my little guys home ~
Laughter fights with tear in eye, really. Sometimes in the same photo.
I never knew about Catrina before. Looked it up and now I understand the hats and veils. I've never had a bucket list before, but suddenly I have one, with one item: descending upon bixa some late October. I'll help hold the dogs.
Bixa, I like to think that I'm a balanced blend of the Saints and Sinners branches of ancestry.
I so enjoyed your reply Lola, and so agree with Bixa about the "apple not falling far from the tree..." (Ahem, when are we ever gong to hear of your Grandfather of whom you have made reference to for years now? Just a gentle prodding...)
This years report has so many singularly great shots. (Of course, having been there, I can appreciate it even more). The people shots in particular are refreshing despite the absence of narrative, which you have covered and reported so well in years past, allowing followers or not, to fully appreciate and or inquire of and then referred to previous links on this topic).
Kerouac, I am a dolt not to have known that & to make childish fun. Re: "unseasonably chilly" -- The temperature often drops here right around the days of the dead. That happens so frequently that people refer to it as "el frio de los muertos". Last year it got quite cold during the festival, in fact I made whiny reference to it my last year's report. But it was perfect this year -- hot during the day and just right in the evening.
Mick, you need to check that shop out. Some of the Mexican ceramics look really great in the garden.
Thank you, Mossie!
Lola, please please don't just think about it -- do it! Come alone, come with your family, or ~ ~ get on the bandwagon to encourage the anyporters to finally come and have the much-threatened pissup here. It's the perfect venue -- no weather extremes, small walkable city, special activities almost all year, and something for every taste: horticulturalists, foodies, shoppers, photographers, anthropologists, artists, etc. etc.
Thank you very much, Casimira! More of everything coming right up.
Strolling down Alcala, the pedestrian street, the next day, I snap the altar in the graphics institute. The sand painting in front is a commentary on the much-feared death of native corn, which is threatened by the gm stuff. It's always worth going into the institute because of their beautiful patios ~
Oh boy oh boy oh boy ~ stilt walkers in front of Sto. Domingo!
Mr. Showmanship there in front is ten years old. He told me he's been doing this since he was six. These boys are so beautiful that it bears repeating that the Zancudos are all males, and all young. They're evenly divided into male and female attire.
Those faces ~ could they be more adorable?!
I checked out the beautiful skies, then went into the pavilion on the right for a look at the Festival of Pan y Molinillos (Bread and Whisks). I'll be back shortly to show all of that ~
Oaxaca has a dinky international airport. Its code letters are OAX. Just to make things confusing, sometimes when you reserve online you'll be asked if you want the Huatulco airport or the Xoxocotlán airport. You want Xoxocotlán. It's likely you would change in Mexico City, but there are direct flights from Houston to Oaxaca. There may be direct flights from other cities as well, but I could not find out by googling. Prepare to blanch when you find out what it costs to fly here.
Lola, that was the original plotline of Blondie and Dagwood -- she was a flapper and his family had reservations about his marrying her.
Here we are admiring the pan de muertos -- a traditional, eggy bread that makes an appearance at other festival times, when it's simply called pan de yema (yolk). Since this kind of bread is generally served alongside hot chocolate, the molinillos (wooden beaters) for foaming the chocolate are sharing this mini-fair.
Even the plainest of these beaters are impressive, since the whole thing -- including the loose wooden rings -- is carved from a single piece of wood. This man's stuff is exquisite. The tiny rings on the molinillo earrings are capped with silver. The hand on the large piece behind them holds a molinillo pen. The hand on the big piece in the following picture holds a Mexican flag ~
I don't know what the story is on these people. They look as though they just got terrible news ~
On the afternoon of October 31st, I took my dogs to an event that I thought would be fun and also be a great photo-op. Really, it was a triumph of bad planning, which wound up being tiring for all the initially enthusiastic pooches who participated. I did get a few cute pictures, though.
Here we are at home getting ready. You can see I spent many hours and much money on their costumes ~
"Oh -- we're at the park! This is gonna be fun!"
Um, no -- it wound up being more like this before the organizers finally allowed us to move on to Alcala for the parade ~
Awwww ~~ thanks, Questa! I'll tell them you said that.
Excellent question about the wood for the molinillos. I will find out and let you know.
So glad you are enjoying this. It's time for me to wrap it up. In this post I'm showing the rest of Oct. 31, so the post after this will be the last ........ well, the last one until next year when all the anyporters come here to make their own day of the dead threads.
Kids reacting to dogs ~
We finally stop for the costume contest, but I only stayed long enough for my dogs to take a turn, then tried to take the frazzled little guys home. We ran smack into the Scouts parade ~
So now in thread time it is November 1st -- All Saints Day.
I only took one daytime picture, admiring the sky for doing its yearly nice and moody Day of the Dead thing ~
The plan was to go out that evening to photograph a Catrina contest. I never did find it, but had ample other stuff to look at ~
I'm thrilled to find a castillo in front of Sto. Domingo. It turned out to be for the couple who were inside the church getting married. This is not one of the bigger ones, but if you've never seen a castillo, watch the video ~
The entire crowd in the street in front of the church applauded the bride ~
I plunge into the crowd ~
I've had enough, so work my way out of there and go home ~
November 2nd, All Souls Day, is always very quiet. Businesses are closed and this is a day for families to go to the cemeteries. I enjoy the peace, only venturing out in the afternoon to take the dogs for their walk at the cruz de piedra park ~
Oh my Oh my!! Bixa - what a sensational account of the annual Day of The Dead. Just so overwhelmingly full of EVERYTHING ...like Mossie said, the colours are exceptional. The flowers, the people, the costumes - especially the doggie ones - all the little trinkets and food on sale make it a spectacle totally unsurpassed. Well, well done Bixa! It is going to take days of viewing but now that I am free for a short while I will be making the most of your thread.
Post by cheerypeabrain on Nov 4, 2015 17:04:45 GMT
Glorious, fantastic and beautiful thread...thank you Bixa for bringing such colour, life and light into my wet and gloomy day. It is a joy to see people celebrating their ancestors in such a positive and fulfilling manner. The vibrant colours and intense activity leap out of the page. Wonderful. XXX
Is a year enough time to brush up on high school Spanish and get time off from work, yet reasonable chance we potential pissuppers would still be on this side of the Great Dividing Line? Two years? I am finding $500 fares from here, 15 hrs total down with two changes, nine hours back, checking random days in Feb. Not all that bad. Kerouac and I could talk about Paris. (peace, brother!)
(However, I remember reading somewhere that Southerners urge you to visit, then are dismayed when you actually show up. I'm too much of a border stater to know if that's true. I am afraid we'd slow you down. On the other hand, those who didn't show up would just have to be out of luck.)
Ha, funny about the Bumsteads. Take that, disapproving families!
I was so overwhelmed by the scope of this report that I forgot to comment about the nighttime portion. I love the castillo video, especially the fact that there are completely different phases of the display.
The skull faced bishop in green is a totally perfect photograph. I can't say the same for the clown in the doorway, which is just pure evil waiting to pounce.
And I am overwhelmed, but hugely gratified by all your generous comments ~ thank you!
Good going, Mick -- they probably makes the agaves grow better.
So kind, Tod. I hope you get here one day. I think there are so many things you'd really enjoy. We even have a fabric museum.
I appreciate that, Mossie. Darla was irritated by the flowers around her neck, but the boys seemed to be totally into channeling lions.
Awwww ~ you are always so kindly enthusiastic about my efforts, Cheery. And I love how you get why I like it here so much.
Lola, Lola, Lola ~ I have been URGING everyone to come here forever. I know we've discussed it one of my threads at least once before. Of course I would love to see you however & whenever you can get here, official gathering or not. But again, I think everyone coming at the same time would be the pissup di tutti pissups, whether during muertos or not. I'm talking about really making a big deal out of it, with people staying long enough to really see the area and of course to hang out together. I only have one extra double bed, but it was you, Lola, who suggested that a venue be found to house a group, for those who'd like to do it that way. Here is stuff that can be seen & done here: crafts villages, hiking, birding, pre-Columbian ruins, markets, eating, drinking (come on -- who wouldn't want to go to a real Mexican bar where you get a snack with each drink ordered and musicians come to your table? ), shopping, sightseeing, etc. So yes, this is not a meaningless "y'all come" invitation. It's a real, heartfelt, deeply desired invitation.
Oh, thank you, thank you, Kerouac! Just think, that was a fairly dinky castillo. And I truly appreciate your picking out the bishop, as that is my favorite photo from the whole thread. I did think about putting the clown in a spoiler, but you coulrophobics are gonna have to come to terms with those fears when you visit here.