31 October 2012

A Discovery

That last entry was incredibly boring, was it not? I myself attempted to reread it this morning over coffee and could not make it through. I occasionally feel compelled to write and post something like that for reasons that I cannot explain.

Let's look at some pictures today.

I had sworn never again to publish another photograph of a door or another photo of a Mexican church in this blog. I have sworn never again to do a lot of things in my life. I justify myself in this case by pointing out that the subject of this entry is not a church but rather a chapel.

30 October 2012

Lázaro Cárdenas Again

That is enough of a break. I am refreshed now, and if one closes down shop for an extended period in respect for the victims of every meteorological catastrophe that comes along in this new Anthropocene geological epoch, then the shop is likely never to be open again. What is the only viewpoint from which such things are viewed as "catastrophes" after all? Why, the anthropocentric point of view of course. I doubt that a bird, just before he is thrashed to death by the winds, regards what has befallen him as a "catastrophe." Neither does he regard himself as a "victim." He certainly does not regard it as a manifestation of God's justified wrath. Rather, he writes it all off as just another cost of doing business as a bird. If he gives it any thought at all. Which I concede is even more doubtful.  

Today I wish to pass along yet another anecdote relating to my hero, Lázaro Cárdenas, one of the youngest generals to fight in the Revolution of 1910 and President of Mexico from 1934 to 1940. The source of this anecdote is another great man, Cossío del Pomar. Cossío del Pomar, a Peruvian painter, writer, and historian, lived in San Miguel during the thirties and forties while in political exile from Peru. I know not why he was exiled from Peru, but he probably deserved his exile for getting mixed up in Latin American politics in the first place. He was probably lucky that he was not shot.

29 October 2012

I Lost Track

It had somehow escaped my attention the the Day of the Dead approaches this weekend. I was finally brought up to date on that when I bumped into three men setting up this display at the Independence fountain down at the end of calle Cardo yesterday.

27 October 2012

The Pickup Truck

I do not want anyone worrying about the pickup truck. The pickup truck is just fine.

25 October 2012

Crop Report

There is a good stand of Mexican corn.

Today I will give a brief report on the state of the crops in the part of Mexico where I live. I know there are at least a couple of regular visitors to this blog who will be interested. The vast majority of visitors will not be interested. I reveal up front what is coming in this entry so that they can move on to something else on the internet that interests them more.

22 October 2012

Your Own Pleasure; Not the Approval of Others

From late August 2011 until August of this year, I did almost nothing of consequence except write. I posted nothing of that writing here, which explains the dearth of entries in this blog during that period. Perhaps I should have posted more of that writing here, but that is neither here nor there now. I am an old fashioned man in many respects. Attempting to write in the English language as well as I can while at the same time developing a thought logically and clearly, which are actually the same thing, gives me a great deal of pleasure. This is true even though the thoughts I attempt to express are for the most part frivolous and of no real consequence. That is of no moment to me because everything about life seems to be frivolous and of no real consequence to me from the larger point of view.

21 October 2012

Greetings to the Danes

Newly Restored

This smoggy little snapshot taken in Mexico City during one of my forays there has proven to be one of the more popular photos ever published here. Now for the first time ever, I present to you the original, uncropped and now newly restored version:

20 October 2012

Guanajuato Revisited: Ten More Photos

Over on the right on this page, you will see a list of the ten most visited entries in this blog through the years. In the number nine position is "Guanajuato: Ten Photos." I suspect it holds that position because so many of the people of Mexico have such a fondness for the city of Guanajuato no matter where they live. Yet, I have been ashamed of the quality of those original ten photos since shortly after putting them up. Many were just tourist crap, the likes of which can be seen anywhere. How disappointed many of the visitors there must have been! I have finally renovated some of them and replaced some of them with other photos. Whether or not that is ethical in this blogging business I care not. It had to be done. The ten photos to be found there now may not be works of art, but they are better than the original ten.

To atone for my past sin further, there follows ten more photos taken on visits to Guanajuato, the city of tunnels, the city of pastels, the city of affectionate young couples.

19 October 2012

Unequal Time for Siqueiros

Before we leave the subject of murals once again, I think we should give at least a nod to David Alfaro Siqueiros, the man whose name I persist in misspelling. With Rivera and José Clemente Orozco, Siqueiros was one of the Big Three Mexican muralists of the early Twentieth Century.

More Murals

I do not intend now to dedicate this blog to Diego Rivera. There are other blogs so engaged, and certainly many more dedicated to his wife, Frida Kahlo, also known as Santa Frida. We will follow up here, however, with more detail photographs. The large section of the mural depicting Mexican history that topped the previous entry is located on the center wall of the stairwell in the National Palace. In the photograph above that panel is on the right. The side walls of the stairwell also feature murals on that same subject, One of those side walls is shown in the photograph above. It is a massive mural, amazing in its scope.

18 October 2012

Restoration Project

This is a section of Diego Rivera's massive mural depicting all of Mexican history. It is located in the National Palace in Mexico City, a photo of which follows.

17 October 2012

La Alborada Beauties

There were some beauties in the parade on the first of the month. This young lady is doing her best impression of San Miguel Arcángel. How could anyone who visits this blog not know what a big fan that I am of San Miguel Arcángel? The helmet is on just a little crooked, but I forgive her.

In the Countryside

These are plantings that I liked in front of house in the country. The little girl is in the front yard at the right.

16 October 2012

Young Couple

In late August I was out at El Charco del Ingenio Nature Preserve practicing walking on the The Pipeline. In fact I was at the precise spot on the pipe where we last left off that endeavor here. On the other side of the canyon, I saw these school kids. She is still in her school uniform. As soon as the young people this age get out of school around 2:00 in the afternoon, they immediately couple up. Parque Benito Juarez back in town is full of them necking there. One has to avert one's eyes when walking through the park during the couple of hours after school adjourns for the day because some of these young couples really get it on.

15 October 2012


And another thing. The intricacy of the structure of the spines on some of these cacti is amazing. If one slows down to take a look. Slow down and take a look. Click on that photo and look at those spines.


Yes, I suppose that I should have removed the stick.

14 October 2012

The Urge Passed

I sat for a time in the plaza two days ago contemplating this sign across the way while I smoked a cigar of Cuban tobacco that had been hand rolled before my eyes just minutes before I purchased it. I received good marks in the civics class of my youth, able to parrot well the received wisdom about democracy in America. So it was that, like a lapsed Catholic who still occasionally feels the need to confess, I had the fleeting thought that perhaps I should vote in the forthcoming presidential election in the United States of America. The sponsors of this sign claim that it is an easy thing to do from here. Later, I walked home, took a cool shower and a siesta, and the feeling passed entirely.

12 October 2012

The Trek

I ask everyone's patience through this blog entry. Then we will be done with churches again for a good long while. In the middle of August, I trudged far up on the side of the mountain in the early morning hours before dawn--por la madrugada, to use my favorite Spanish word. I did this in an attempt to take some photos with effect for a couple of friends in particular. Ever since I have been working off and on trying to salvage something from that trek.

The photos below are not successes. I am not going to toss everything, however, without putting up at least two after that hike up the side of the mountain.

San Francisco Church

Yes, many things are named after Saint Francis here. Saint Francis is nearly as popular as Saint Michael.

I have taken yet another run at photographing that massive church. I hope someday to be able to make a few pesos selling picture postcards and pencils on some street corner.

11 October 2012

Hotel San Francisco

Laura arrives in an hour and a half--or an hour--or perhaps two hours--to clean the apartment. I must shower and get the hell out of here. She does not want me around here under foot when she cleans, and I live in fear of her wrath.

I will therefore simply put up a photo that was somewhat popular in the other blog some time ago and get moving.

Late morning coffee at Hotel San Francisco.

10 October 2012

Nuestra Señora de la Salud

I am not ready to think about The Pipeline again quite yet. Instead, let's take another look at the Templo de Nuestra Señora de la Salud on a Sunday morning via still another photo of a church. This church is nearly older than water itself, built in 1555 or thereabouts.

08 October 2012

Greetings and Good Wishes Once Again

Pardon me for neglecting to bring in my towel that was hanging over the rail before I took this photo.

Back to the Pipeline

Enough frolicking around town for now. Where were we on the pipeline? We had an overview of the canyon here. We had begun reviewing the bidding here. We then abandoned the pipeline at the bad spot near the top of the canyon, considered the whole thing philosophically, and went down to the bottom of the canyon to take a psychosexual look at the cut here. At this point then, we should turn around and head back up the canyon toward the bad spot from the bottom up. Here we encounter a long stretch of the pipeline that is mounted on piers.

07 October 2012

Best of the Distaff Show

I promised to put up some photos of my favorite ladies in the parade during La Alborada. We will do that now and then leave the parade for awhile. Earlier I gave away one of my choices. Here are the rest.

I thought this lady brought some real presence and style to the show.

The Ordeal

If you would like to read more about the ordeal--my own name for it--and see more photos, you can click here to do so.

06 October 2012

The Group

I know many of the visitors here are not all that excited about parades. Nor am I normally. I have spent a lifetime avoiding parades. In fact I did not attend the previous three parades in connection with La Alborada, Saint Michael's very own fiesta, that have taken place while I have lived here. I did attend the one last Saturday obviously. For the first time in my life, I enjoyed a parade.

Groups from all over Mexico, from as far away as Oaxaca, came to town for this parade, which features indigenous costumes and dance. I am ashamed to say that I do not know where my favorite group came from. I missed the sign with that information, but they quickly got my attention. For one thing, they had some stringed instruments.

05 October 2012

More Photos of the Parade

If you would like to see more professional photos of the parade during La Alborada fiesta, please visit my friend Michel's blog by clicking here.

04 October 2012

Best in Show

I honestly do not know if the intention was Cuauhtémoc, but for the purposes of this blog, I am saying that he is Cuauhtémoc.

Waiting for the Parade

The truth is that I was only testing the settings on the camera. I cannot explain why I did not then erase the photo on the spot. After mousing past it innumerable times on the computer later, finally I looked at it. And I liked it.

Conde de la Canal on 29 September 2012 at 5:25 p.m. waiting for a 5:00 start. See the lady resting her head on the man's shoulders under the window? This is Mexico.

02 October 2012

Plaza de Toros Oriente

Mirafuentes de Anda

La 3ª Novillada en San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato. 10 agosto 2012.

Uriel "El Zapata" Moreno

Uriel "El Zapata" Moreno in the moment of truth. His colleagues on the afternoon card, Juan Luis Silis farthest left and Antonio "El Chihuahua" Garcia center right, are watching. Plaza de Toros Oriente on 16 September 2012.