Tijuana is the low calorie version of Los Angeles
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Saturday, December 12, 2009
The current, modern style basilica is to the left in the photo and its predecessors in the back middle and right. Atop the hill in the distant background is another chapel.
During the festival of Guadalupe the esplanade is jammed with people moving around, camping out and dancing. Many independent groups of dancers perform at the same time in their respective costumes.
Vast numbers of pilgrims come to the basilica to celebrate the appearance of the Virgen on December 12. Literally on foot and on bicycle from locations far from Mexico City. Many of them bring blankets and sleeping materials to camp out on the plaza during their stay.
Friday, December 11, 2009
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Tuesday, December 01, 2009
When I took a photography class decades ago at San Francisco State University there was a fellow who shot images of a yard and house in utter disorder, junkyard style. Those pictures fascinated me. Mexico is saturated with refuse put to work in some cases, like here, and just deteriorating in many others. Garbage isn't processed as well in Mexico as the first world. I've seen this fence and gate numerous times on walks and jogs up and down El Cerro del Fortin, the trademark hill above downtown Oaxaca that is also the site of the Gueleguetza Arena, where an annual pageant convenes indigenous groups from throughout the state for dancing and showing off their typical folk fashions and handicrafts.
Sunday, November 29, 2009
This setting on the Zocalo in Oaxaca reminded me of Vincent Van Gogh's beautiful night painting, "Cafe at Arles." Most historical Mexican cities and towns have a central plaza which is the center of social life. Most american cities don't have anything like it. This particular cafe, "Terra Nova," has a bit of modern myth about it. It is rumored to be owned by the mistress of the controversial governor of Oaxaca, Ulises Ruiz. The mini revolution in Oaxaca a couple of years ago dominated by APPO was initially about teachers salaries and morphed into an effort to unseat him. I think that's how it's interpreted.
Friday, November 27, 2009
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
I pass this fresh tile design on my way to my local Wal-mart in the mornings. The decaying building appears to be from the "Porfiriato", the period when Porfirio Diaz ran Mexico prior to the Mexican Revolution in the 1910's, a time known for "Europeanization".
Thursday, November 05, 2009
On a bus heading west on the Pereferico Sur (southern segment of the most important ring highway in Mexico City) my view was captivated by this arresting pattern. Later I visited and discovered it is a cultural center next to the pyramid park Cuicuilco. The southern zone of Mexico City is known as a prosperous one relative to other zones of the city. UNAM, the mega university of Mexico is about a 20 minute walk from here.
Sunday, November 01, 2009
Cemetery San Fernando is home of many very important political figures from Mexican history, the most important, of course, is Benito Juarez, Mexico's Abraham Lincoln. As in all cemeteries, tombs are decorated with orange flowers during the holiday. In this case, though, it's not likely relatives of the deceased make the decorations and "ofrendas".
La Catrina, a character popularized by printmaker Jose Guadalupe Posadas, at beginning of 20th century, is immensely popular as a costume during the Dia de Los Muertos holidays. The idea is elegant people, just like everybody else, are subject to death.
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Sunday is busy in Alameda Park. Masses of people congregate to listen to music, dance, eat, shop and cruise each other. Generally, the crowd is of lower economic means, shorter in height, and more indigenous than the city at large. Probably many of these people have come to Mexico City from areas in central and south of the country seeking better opportunities. Cumbia style music is popular with this group.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
Plaza Santa Domingo is where the illiterate used to go to have letters written. Today there are many small job printers as well as typists who are available for letters and forms. Ron is a friend of mine, originally from Fort Worth, Texas who has lived in Mexico City for ten years. We met at the Spanish Conversation Group held weekly at the Casa de Los Amigos, a Quaker Center and hostel near downtown. He says he swam the Rio Grande to get to Mexico.