Tuesday, December 17, 2019

San Luis Potosí, Mexico, el diecisiete de Deciembre, 2019

I slept in!  I did go to bed fairly late because I have Netflix and so was watching Marriage Story, an apparent Oscar contender but to wake up at 9:44!  That’s a first!

I decided I’m sick of eggs for breakfast so walked a block and spotted a food booth, complete with colour tv.  I love the antennae-

A mercador was nearby and I just love them. There’s all sorts of interesting booths-

I’ve seen a few stalls selling this moss and finally asked about it.  People buy it to put in Jesus’ manger for their Nativity scene-

There’s always food - Enchiladas Potosinos are fried tortillas filled with a spicy cheese sauce and are very good-

I ended up visiting with a 74 year old man who has a son living in Ottawa.  He was very interested in where I was living and how I secured my space.  I told him about AirBNB and he’s going to look into it to possibly rent part of his house.  He thought the 200 pesos I paid per night was very expensive considering he pays 800 pesos/month!  

I walked to the Centro Historico and visited the huge Alameda Juan Sarabia park.  They have a kids carnival going on-

In the centre of the park is a monument to Miguel Hidalgo who was a Mexican Roman Catholic priest and a leader for the Mexican War of Independence-

There are so many parks but it makes sense because no one has a yard so parks are a green space that everyone can enjoy.  I wandered past the Teatro which was closed-

Across the street is the Mask Museum.  I was a little apprehensive after the 3500 mask museum in Zacatecas but found this one much more professionally laid out and the masks were well displayed. The museum is housed in a former home of a mining baron.  He had the house built - it takes up a full city block, for his family!  Unbelievable really-

The inside courtyard-

The museum celebrates the different traditions and cultural events in the country but more specifically in the state of San Luis Potosí where there are four different areas-

At first, the information was in both Spanish and quite poorly translated English, in fact, I was just complaining to myself that I should read the Spanish instead of the English because it was a lot of words that really didn’t say much when all of a sudden, there was no more English at all.  I had a chuckle over that!
In the pre-hispanic world there was a deep feeling of reverence for the dead so the funeral mask had special significance.  In Ancient Mexico, a dog guided the deceased to the underworld using a mask that conferred supernatural powers.  It is also thought that the mask led to immortality-

 There are masks for the Fish Dance-

The jaguar is the symbol of strength and related to the Earth.  The Tiger Dance expresses the difficulty to tame the land-

These look like porcupine quills-

They used parts of the corn plant for hair-

A devil mask at Carnaval-

There were a few ‘modern’ masks. This one used spark plugs-

The Fiesta de Tlahualil starts nine days before July 25 which is the Day of Santiago Apostal.  There’s a parade and this headpiece is worn-

The Dance of the Feathers comes from the Oaxaca region and the Dance of the Quetzales comes from the Puebla and Veracruz regions-

 The Carnaval de Oruro in Bolivia is a big popular festival remembering the Virgin of Socavon from 1631-

Other traditional costumes-

I enjoyed my time here but it was a lovely day so I carried on.  The Church of Saint Augustin has one gothic tower-

More beautiful buildings-

I don’t know if there are always so many people shopping on Tuesdays but the streets were very packed.  Maybe it’s the Christmas Frenzy, I’m not sure but people have to eat so there are many food choices along the way including churros.  They were cold and so tasted a little greasy.  They’re better when they’re hot-

The Capilla de Nuestra Senonra de Loreto has two sanctuaries and it’s the first church I’ve visited in Mexico that still allows burning candles.  So many have stopped this practice because the smoke blackens everything inside-

My next stop was at the Museo de Arte Contemporaneo (MAC) which had an awesome exposition by Ruben Orozco Loza.  He’s a sculptor from Guadalajara that uses clay.  There was a video playing showing him at work.  His stuff is amazing: David Bowie is on the right-

A pope-

Her butt even has dimples-

This guy was larger than life-

Frida, Frida-

After,, I stopped in one more church - San Juan de Dios-

They had a fantastic Christmas Village display-

With a creche-

And then typical scenes from villages-

It was very cool.  I had a good day but am a bit worried about tomorrow.  The high is supposed to be only 13 and I don’t really have cold weather clothes so.....  There is another museum I want to visit and tomorrow it’s supposed to be free entry.  I should have brought my teaching certificate because teachers get in to all museums for half price.  They don’t cost much anyway, usually 20 pesos which is $1.40 but.....  I’m going to check out Netflix again tonight and see what tomorrow brings.

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