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Dirty Dancing Danzon

Mercedes, a senior in my English classes, introduced me to danzon, a style of dance (like tap, square dancing or salsa), forever changing how I experience Mexico.  Through danzon I performed at festivals around town and the country, taught classes hither and yon for years, …

Happy Trails!

The horse was essential to the Spanish Inquisition and occupation of Mexico.  The horse was transportation, communication, wealth and companionship all in one friendly foal. The horse sailed over from Spain with the conquistadors arriving in 1519 with Hernan Cortes’ 16 horses with names like Bob-Tail and Morzillo.  The …

A Galaxy of Mexican Braiding

My daughter was born was a fright wig worthy head of hair driving both of us to distraction.  She sported a bowl cut looking like a 1920s flapper until she able to comb her own hair without a reminder from me.  That took nearly 15 years! Imagine …

Barking Through Mexican History

To the pre-Hispanic indigenous, man’s best friend was a hairless dog serving as an occasional food source and, most importantly, guide to the Underworld.  Viewers of the movie, Coco, will recognize the hairless dog that guides the boy through his after-life adventures is a Mexican Hairless dog. …

Going Out in Style

Third row in at our Guadalupe cemetery is a substantial, Federal-style mausoleum for Oratorio priests.  The Oratorio church in centro, run by said priests, is twofold unique. One is the founder’s preoccupation with the notion that joy, laughter and song bring one closer to God.  …

The Model for Mexican Masculinity

St. Joseph is mentioned only eight times in the New Testament. Prior to the late medieval period, Church doctrine rarely noticed him.  However, in 1555 this humble carpenter, Mary’s husband and foster father of Jesus, was made patron of the conquest and conversion of Mexico forever influencing favored Mexican …

Disturbingly Delightful Ditty

As bad, but still, luck would have it, the week before the virus hit town a year ago my favorite dance student stumbled breaking her leg and hip.  Hips heal somewhat fast, but in your 80s major bone breaks take a bit of time and she’s been …

The Dancer in the Kitchen

This week was the feast day of St. Paschal Baylon, a lad featured in most every San Miguel de Allende restaurant and kitchen that during the 18th century was a major cause for celebration for those that worked in orchards. Paschal (also known as Pasqual, Pascual and alike) tended …

Fossil-Hunting in San Miguel

The best area for exploring Mesoamerican sites in San Miguel de Allende runs from the border of colonia San Luis Rey out to Las Canas, a community on the road to Dolores Hidalgo behind Los Labradores.  This same area features an abundance of fossils giving insight to what the San Miguel de Allende area was …

Colonial Nuns – Where Feminism Met It’s Match

When I was a child my father would dress up as a nun to be Master of Ceremonies at local churches’ roasts of their priests.  Dad was introduced as the visiting Sr. Virginia allowing him to add “Virgin for short, but not for long.” Since apples …