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

Friday, March 31, 2017


It is fiesta week in nearby Etla so there are rides set up in all the open areas surrounding the market.  I was there on market day and found myself following these folks as we walked down, normally crowded, but strangely empty paths through the rides. 
Such a perfect shot of the lady laden with her full bags and balancing the rest on her head.
And so normal to see these two little kids out on their own exploring.
As I followed the woman and headed back to my car, I saw this woman jump out of a mototaxi with bags full of beautiful fresh squash blossoms.  So many.....
I imagined her harvesting the just hours ago...

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

How hot is it?

That's how hot it is...

How is Trump Effecting Mexican Trade?

Very interesting responses from Mexico...
From Bizlatinhub
Mexico’s economic outlook was under a wave of uncertainty when Trump pledged to get rid of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) during the campaign of his presidency. The new POTUS also threatened to impose a border tax on Mexican-made goods, which sent the Mexican peso to a record low in January. Despite the insecurity the Mexican people faced with Trump rhetoric potentially bringing their markets down, Mexican officials have been proactive in securing their nations prosperity and longevity in the global marketplace. Here is what Mexico has been up to recently.

In February of this year, Mexico declared a trade surplus of USD$684 million, the largest surplus they have experienced in almost two years. In its 5th consecutive month of expansion, in January, the economy saw a 0.3 percent increase from the previous month. This is a better than expected growth considering the negative forecasts the country faced after a Trump presidency was to take place. Low oil prices drag the economy down in regards to Mexican output from the oil industry, but steady growth in the service and agricultural sectors have been making up for it.
Continue reading... 

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Tree work in the zocalo....

Mixed emotions as I watched tree work on the huge laurel on the northeast corner of the zocalo.  This is one of the oldest and most famous zocalos in all Mexico.  Hey, it's where Carlos Castaneda met Don Jun.  The trees are such an important part of the ambience and they are slowly but surely getting old and diseased.  It happens.  There may be various problems besides old age.  Insects, fungi, blights and people in general.  There's a tree worker up there.  See him?
Pretty nice work if you could get it.
Let's hope they keep on keepin' on.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

So good..

It is so good to be back where I can fall back into my routine of visiting these folks and getting the best and freshest fruit, cheese, juices and vegetables.  This was the morning trek to Etla and back... in order.  First, quesillo
Then avocados and tomatoes
Bananas and onions
On the way back in Santiago Etla, freshly squeezed OJ..... so good!
And just down the street, my local fruit ladies for mango and melon
And everyone was smiling and happy to see me... what a feeling!

Friday, March 24, 2017

Día de la Samaritana

Oaxaca is a perfect to practice compassion and generosity on a daily basis, but today is extra special.

We're not in Kansas anymore.....

Nor in El Norte, where the color schemes of Boston are somewhat more muted that those here in Oaxaca.  It feels good to be back.....
This beauty is in San Martin Tilcajete.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Friday, March 17, 2017

Getting serious about soy sauce...

I love going to the Great Wall Supermarket in Chinatown to stock up on supplies I can't get in Oaxaca.... like soy sauce.  Quite a selection....
I get the aged soy sauce.  It is absolutely delicious. 
And at a ridiculously low price - $3.99 for a one liter bottle. 

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Only in Etla...

I am in El Norte, waiting for a blizzard to arrive, dreaming of Doña Melisa's delicious tamales.... in this case, rajas... along with real avocados (impossible to find here) and fresh tomatoes.
Unfortunately, they are only available in Etla at the market on Wednesdays.

Fortunately, she will be there when I get back... after the blizzard.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Like I need this!

I had to head north to see if my previously frozen pipes and all the damage they had caused had been repaired.  The work is done and looks great, but... I don't need this.  (Temps in F. not C.)

Meanwhile in Oaxaca, maybe the rains will come while I am gone... Ojala!

Friday, March 10, 2017

Atzompa - All Downhill from Here

The archaeological site of Atzompa sits high above the city of Oaxaca and is one of my favorite places to visit.  The road up from the village is quite steep, but once you reach the top, the views are spectacular and you can coast all the way down...... wheeeee...

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Lights out

Honoring International Women's Day

Friday, March 3, 2017

Race to the bottom...

C'mon... Our guy can do better than this.
Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto’s job approval rating fell to 17 percent last quarter, the lowest of his mandate, in reaction to the hike in fuel prices ordered by his government in January and despite his call for unity in the face of the threat posed by US President Donald Trump and his policy proposals.

Peña Nieto “is at the lowest levels” of popularity since measurements of that kind were begun due to the public’s “accumulated anger” aggravated by the gasoline price hike, Roy Campos, the president of Grupo Mitofsky, the consulting firm that conducted the latest survey on the matter, told EFE.

A quarterly survey by Mitofsky released on Tuesday revealed that the president has an approval rating of just 17 percent and a disapproval rating of 77 percent, the lowest popularity level of his 2012-2018 term so far.

The decline over the past two years in popularity for Peña Nieto, who had an approval rating of 42 percent in November 2013, according to the Mexican daily El Universal, can be explained by the decisions he has taken in office, including supporting gay marriage, Campos said.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Carnaval in San Martin Tilcajete

Famous for its many woodcarvers, yesterday San Martin Tilcajete was the place to be for carnaval and people from all over descended on the village to celebrate.  This village has been, for many years, one of Mexico's most famous for its figuras or alebrijes.  I admit to being hopelessly addicted to collecting them for many years.   For carnaval there is always a wedding, with two lucky young men as bride and groom.
There are all sorts of looks and costumes.
Always fun to do double takes as a beautiful woman walks by and then you see it's one of the guys.
This celebration has become very popular in the last few years.  There were people from all over and lots joined in the festivities.  This man was from Australia and he was getting the full treatment from good friend, Jesus Sosa Calvo, coming from one of the best and most highly acclaimed carving families including wife, Juana, sister, Francisca and son, Apolinar.
The finished look.
A pensive shot...
Wonderful design on the skin...
Woodcarving, for which  San Martin Tilcajete is world famous.
It is also famous for its masks.
And here is one of the classic looks, oiled and looking fine.
A silver celebrant, another classic village look.