Adios San Miguel de Allende
This magical city has captivated us...as the kids say...big time!!! It will be so very difficult to leave and yet our hearts are so very strongly drawn home to our family, our children, grandchildren and dear friends. How I wish we could be in two places at once!!
Over the past 5 weeks, we have forged sweet friendships with a number of people. Our dear friends Eduardo and Silvia, newly moved to San Miguel from Cuenavaca, are two people we cherish. Eduardo and Victor perform weekly at the Shelter Theatre; their collaboration has resulted in some exceptionally amazing music. But, I'm biased. My teacher at Warren Hardy, the wonderfully talented and sweet Rocio has helped me deepen my love for the language and, yes, the people. She is amazing!! We have also become regulars at a small local restaurant, Don Lupe's Grill. It is here that Yoremem sings every Friday night and Victor joins her on occasion. The owner, Javier, always greets us warmly, sincerely happy to see us. Today, for our last "comida" we all had tears in our eyes. He was so disappointed to hear that we might not be back for at least a year. There are others, but these people are the reason we will feel deeply sad to be leaving.
The events in San Miguel happen weekly and some are truly spectacular in terms of representing the culture and history. As well, the architecture, especially the doors, are something every painter would fall in love with!!
Celebrations for El Señor de La Conquista
This annual festival takes place the first Thursday and Friday in March. Participants travel from many cities and villages for miles around. It's a bit of a puzzle. Traditional costumes, the beating drums...very pre-Hispanic. And then there are the banners of the Virgin of Guadalupe and Christ on the cross at the front of each group of dancers. So, it's no wonder that we are perplexed. The best that we can determine is that the celebration represents the acceptance of Christ by the indigenous peoples. An image of Christ, Christ of the Conquest (El Señor de La Conquista), is a 16th century image which is now housed in the pink baroque Parroquia in the centre of the city. The conchero dancers originally started the tradition as a way to preserve indigenous heritage after the Catholic conquest of Mexico and a way to honour Christ. While the Spanish tried to eliminate all pagan rituals, many have remained and have been incorporated into Catholicism.
Mexico...you are an enigma...a wonderful enigma!!