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

Thursday, July 9, 2009

La Danza de las Plumas - Teotitlan del Valle

Yesterday, we were invited out to visit good friends in Teotitlan del Valle, the Zapotec weaving village. I shot over 350 photos and a good chunk of video, so it will take some time to filter through to find the nuggets. I am always very happy if I get 10%, so that means maybe 30 or so, which would make a heck of a post, so I guess I will do it as a series.We started at the home of master weaver, Zacharias Ruiz and his sons, Antonio and Betto. Here's Antonio and his daughter.His mother, Zach's wife, Emelia, is one of the best cooks I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. Hands down, her molé negro is the finest I have ever had. Yesterday, she made what seemed like hundreds of tamales filled with molé amarillo y pavo(turkey). They proudly said that the corn came from their land the the turkeys from the backyard. They were delicious. I ate maybe, ten, but Zacharias put away at least twenty.So after a few beers, some mescal, homemade tortillas (nothing like 'em) salsa and tamales, we were off to the church to watch la danza de las plumas, sometimes called the dance of the conquistadors. I was with Henry Wangeman of Amate Books and he showed me the way to get up into the bell tower overlooking the whole village, a spectacular place from which to shoot. Henry split, but I stayed up there and eventually someone came up to kick me out, but after talking to him, he said, "You're OK, you can stay, but hide yourself and don't let anyone else up here."The danza de las plumas has been danced in this village for over 500 years and probably existed in some other form for years before. This place has almost 2000 years of history.More about it in the next post, but here are a few shots. The dance began at about five in the afternoon with the band playing under a huge tree.Here is one of the principles, a real cutie and a great dancer.It was an exhausting and exhilarating day.


La Cubanófila said...

Vovlerémos a ver a Emilia, Zacarías y familia cuándo yo esté allá. Es verdad que ella es una cocinera de primera y uno siempre disfruta el tiempo en Teotitlán. Me gustaron mucho las fotos.

Anonymous said...

There is often nothing more substantial to place against the cruelty and indifference of the world than the caring with which you reveal and share Oaxaca.