The here and now... and what and why

Complacency is a trap. At least that’s what I was thinking when I up and left the comfort of a Yankee prep school gig, where I taught music, amongst other things, for 28 years. There was also that life long career as a composer, musician and artist.

First, it was a year in St. Thomas, USVI, working as a reporter and shooting photography and then, a year in San Agustin Etla, Oaxaca, Mexico.
Time passed.
More time passed and a year back in the Athens of America followed by a hasty return to Oaxaca where it is all happening.
A couple of years in San Sebastian Etla and now, just down the road in San Pablo Etla. Life is good.

Click on an image to see it larger.
For additional photography please visit my flickr page.
You can find my music on Jango (World & latin - Worldbeat) and at iTunes and most online stores.
¡Soy consciente de todas las tradiciones del Internet!
If you are coming to Oaxaca, please contact me for tours or advice.

Santo Domingo

Santo Domingo
The view from Corazon del Pueblo

The hereafter re me

My photo
Oaxaca, Oaxaca, Mexico
Musician, photographer, videographer, reporter, ex-officio teacher, now attempting to be a world traveler

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Another special day in Teotitlan del Valle

The traditions in the Zapotec weaving village of Teotitlan del Valle are fascinating and complex.  After years of going there, I am amazed at how complicated and interconnected almost all aspects of the village life are.  Even though I keep asking questions and getting answers, the more I learn, the more I realize, I don't have a clue.  So a little more research is required, but here's the starting point:  Fidel and Maria Luisa of Casa Cruz, along with Bulmaro Perez Mendoza, are the majordomos (sp) for the Virgin of Guadalupe.  What all this entails, I am still trying to understand, but I do understand it is a major commitment that will culminate in December with a final fiesta. 
However, if there is one thing I do understand, it's food and what could be better than an entire day eating taste treats prepared by the women of the village overseen by Abigail Mendoza, who is world renown as perhaps the best cook in Oaxaca.  I only say "perhaps" because Emilia Ruiz is like family to me and well, you will recall I have called her "one of the best in the entire intergalactic universe."  So needless to say, when you get the two of them (and many, many more) working together, the food is pretty spectacular starting with a late breakfast of higaditos and atole topped with espuma.
That's the foam from home made chocolate.
Here's how it was served.
Mole rojo for hundreds.  Stirring it requires serious strength.
The finished dish... before it was finished off.

The bigger the bowl, the more important its recipient.  They don't eat much of it, but it is symbolic of respect and it does goes home with them.  Here, Emilia does the honors.
All of this took many day of preparation.  In fact I remember Maria Luisa and Fidel preparing months ago.  It is only in the last couple of weeks that many more helped with the work.   It is a four day celebration and we will be heading back mañana.... I don't know how they do it.  It's exhausting, but exhilarating.

No comments: