La Capilla de la Virgen del Patrocinio is located on top of the Bufa, in front of the statue of Pancho Villa (below) and statues of the other two victors of The Battle of Zacatecas: Felipe Ángeles and Pánfilo Natera. This 18th century chapel is named after the patron saint of miners. It’s believed that the image of the Virgin residing above the alter is capable of healing the sick.
Archive for January, 2011
This statue of Pancho Villa commemorates The Battle of Zacatecas, June 1914, where Villa’s Division of the North brought President Huerta’s federal troops, 12,000 strong, to its knees and Villa took over the City. It’s one of the bloodiest battles of the Mexican Revolution where survivors claim that the hills flowed with blood and the streets were littered with corpses.
This statue sits upon the most prominent landmark in Zacatecas, La Bufa, which can be reached by cable car or a good hike. As a mining town rich in silver deposits, Zacatecas was a desirable city and prime target during the war.
Our last day consisted mostly of bus rides:
- 9:00 AM: Hotel to Zacatecas bus station.
- 10:00 AM: Zacatecas bus station to Jerez bus station.
- 11:00 AM: Jerez bus station to Jerez Centro Historico
- 2:30 PM: Jerez Centro to Jerez bus station
- 3:00 PM: Jerez bus station to Zacatecas bus station
- 5:00 PM: Zacatecas bus station to Aguascalientes. Hour late – Marly and I sat in the cold wind outside waiting. Toilet full of unmentionables and definitely unusable. We were unimpressed with Omnibus.
- 7:30 PM: Bus pulls out of Aguascalientes, destination: Leon.
- 10:00 PM: We arrive in Leon
- 10:50 PM: Leon to Guanajuato
- 11:30 PM: Not enough taxis in Guanajuato, so we take the bus to the Mercado and taxi home from there.
We arrived home close to midnight, thankful to be done with traveling!
You know what? I had never had elote before last night. Here, you can get corn on the cob, patted down with lime, lathered in cream, rolled in cheese, and then sprinkled with chili and lightly salted for $13 pesos or $1.07. It’s delicious! Marly told me there are places in L.A. which sell these for $6! Here’s Marly with her’s.
This morning, we’re headed for Zacatecas. I’ve been wanting to go to this beautiful, colonial town for awhile. Now that I’ve got the perfect traveling companion, it will make this trip all the more special and adventuresome. On our way back, Thursday, we hope to check out the Magical Pueblo of Jerez.
Calle Positos runs from the front of the University of Guanajuato to the Alhóndiga. According to Guanajuatocapital.com, the street may owe its name from the corn stores that were located here at one time. You’ll find every architectural style popular since Guanajuato’s founding on Positos as well as the Diego Rivera House Museum.
Marly and I went on a five hour hike yesterday. We explored the Bufa and then had ice cream in Embajadoras. Next, we went into town looking for weddings and Quinceañera celebrations. No luck. So we went back home, watched The Bachelor (lame), and took care of Marly’s sunburn. Around 11pm, Fernando gave Marly a dance lesson and the three of us headed into town for a night of Salsa.
Best scene of the night: An old, drunk, grizzled cowboy—not unlike a Mexican Jeff Bridges—wearing a 10 gallon hat chatted up Marly and saluted her every two minutes. We eventually moved to the front room to get away from him since he was asking Marly to dance after every salute. Harmless, but persistent.
Today, we’re off to see the mummies, maybe the mine, and museums. Marly is wearing sunscreen.
Yesterday afternoon, Marlena and I headed to the glorious ceramics place that is filled with junk and treasure. She picked up a plastic (crucified) Jesus—skinny and white—mounted on blue velvet with an ornate plastic gold frame. I had been debating on getting this myself for a long time, but couldn’t decide if it was really, really bad or genius.
Here we walk with Farley in the alley just outside the ceramics place.
Every Sunday, Fernando and I walk to Mega with our backpacks to buy an entire week’s worth of food and groceries. We bring Farley along and tie him out in the parking lot, far away from everything, where he cries until we return. Fernando calls him Chillon during these times which means cry baby.
Upon our return, Farley is so happy to see us, he hurls himself in our direction as far as the leash will let him, over and over again, his tail wagging like a windshield wiper set on hyper high. We unleash him and arrange the stuff we’ve bought in our backpacks as he jumps boing boing boing around the shopping cart. Then Fernando walks towards the bus stop with the groceries as I walk towards home with Farley. Chillon starts crying again because he wants Fernando to walk with us.
After awhile, Farley is fine and we hurry home, trying to beat Fernando on the bus. Last Sunday, as we started down Tecolote—where there is nothing and nobody so I let Farely smell off leash to his heart’s content—there was a man dressed just like Fernando near the bottom of the hill. He was wearing white shorts like Fernando, black sneakers and white socks, like Fernando, and even had the same kind of backpack Fernando does. Farley, thinking it was Fernando, shot down the hill faster than a bullet. The man, hearing something behind him, turned around to see a dog torpedoing towards him and tried to get up on one of the stairwells. Meanwhile, I yelled for Farley to come back waving my leash at him.
When Farley realized that it was not Fernando, he turned around and started slinking back up the hill towards me, head low, tail down. I was angry and I believe that Farley sensed this because he began looking for refuge, and found it next to a drunk man who was sitting on the sidewalk. Farley hid behind his newfound compadrito, pressing closer to him as I neared. The man did not object. When I reached Farley, I gave his bottom a smart whoop with the leash. Farley darted out from behind the man, and the man, who had seen and heard the whole thing, praised me, “Asi! Asi!” or Like that! Like that!
There was no incident the rest of the walk home (Farley was on the leash). Fernando barely beat us there, and only because I stopped to pet Pulgitas who always listens.
These beautiful, red plants with green tips were everywhere in Xico. I don’t know what they’re called, and I had never seen them before or since.
The University of Guanajauato interpreted by eZmir. Photo taken on Subida a San Miguel, one of the many ways you can return to El Centro from Pipila.
Out beyond the ideas of right-doing or wrong-doing there is a field — I’ll meet you there. ~Rumi
I heard this quote yesterday when listening to Elizabeth Lesser on TedTalks. She spoke about “taking the other to lunch“. By other, she refers to someone who has a different belief structure and dialoguing with that person in order to break down preconceptions and stereotypes. Lesser, an activist from the left, spent lunch with an activist from the right. They agreed on ground rules and created a list of questions to ask one another. It made me think who I would want to do this with.
Blue & tan, the black & white of spaces outside El Centro’s colorful paint combinations this time of year.
Nettie consciously grew blossoms instead of spines. The other spiked branches that grew from the same stem she arose from watched curiously as she attracted bees and admirers.
Farley, resting at the top of La Bufa at one of our water stops.
Is it just me, or is there a sense of advent hope in the air?
Early morning walk around the Lake in Chapala.
I’ve always loved mornings, especially before sunrise. As a child, I used to drink maté with my mother and then go walk with her, a brisk 45 minute circuit, all before the sun rose. Later in Missouri, I would run while everyone slept. I used to imagine dreams floating out of chimneys and rooftops, forming into the Ozark mist I’d see. Then I moved to Eugene and found the best running partners ever. Together, we explored the mornings, created traveling songs, and lasting friendships.
Now, it’s Farley and the crowing roosters spread across Guanajuato’s teacup terrain. We go quickly as the sun pours morning light like honey through the hundreds of callejon crevices.
Boardwalk in Ajijic.