Culture

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Mazatlán art tease

Paul and I started a tradition not long after we got married. Instead of buying each other gifts for our birthdays, anniversaries or Christmas, we shop together for artworks for the house. We have bought some wonderful things over the years.  I think it’s a great tradition – instead of a closet full of unworn items  we can enjoy our gifts every day of the year. I’ve been thinking about anniversaries since it is the anniversary today of two of...

Oaxaca wrap-up

I had such a wonderful time in Oaxaca! If you’ve been reading Countdown to Mexico for a while, you know that I love to knit. I decided that I’d try to find some yarn while I was visiting Oaxaca. The rug weavers in Teotitlán del Valle are expert at using natural dyes to color the yarn that they spin by hand. I didn’t have time on this trip (here’s a link to our visit to Teotitlán del Valle last year)...

Mazatlán’s artistic side…

If you are visiting Mazatlán in the winter, you owe it to yourself to spend the first Friday of each month visiting open artist studios in Centro Historico.  First Friday Art Walk is from 4-8 pm, and you can amble from one studio to another using the maps & artist profiles that are available all over town (and on the website link above).  This month the First Friday art walk is actually taking place on the second  Friday, the 11th,...

Remembering loved ones…

Tomorrow is the Day of the Dead, and we put together a little altar to remember our loved ones who have passed on.  Pictured are my parents, who died way too young.  My mother was only 41 and my father 56.  Paul’s parents are pictured, too – they lived longer – into their 70’s.  There is also a picture of “Papa when he was a girl” – my maternal grandfather, born in 1898, wearing a dress in the days where...

Preserving Mexican textile culture

Most readers here at Countdown to Mexico are likely aware that there is a rich history of unique and beautiful handwoven textiles here in Mexico.  Oaxaca is the state most known for its textiles, but there are wonderful fabrics made throughout the country.  If you are interested in learning more about Mexican textiles, I recommend that you visit Mexican Indigenous Textile Project. where you can see lots of pictures and learn more about the textiles from each area of the...

There’s plenty to do around here…

I’ve talked before about how there is always a lot going on in Mazatlán in the wintertime.  Here’s a taste: Last Friday was the First Fridays Art Walk.  (actually the second Friday because of New Years Day) A couple of friends came over and the four of us headed out together.  There had to be several hundred people cruising around Centro clutching maps (see above) and visiting artist studios, galleries, and private homes.  We saw some wonderful art while chatting...

I love this town!

I am really glad we decided to settle in Mazatlán.  I love living by the ocean.  I love the weather most of the time.  But really it is all about the people.  I just love the people here. The Mexican population is  just so nice!  No one is ever impatient with my Spanish, I truly think they like to help, they are that nice. How can that be? Everyone smiles and greets each other.  People want to chat.  People inquire...

I know, I know…

The handkerchief plant is even blooming now! I haven’t been blogging very frequently lately.  I think the enthusiasm for writing ebbs and flows, right now I have been spending more of my energy doing other things – knitting, reading, helping a friend with a new business, and getting back into the swing of wintertime social and cultural events. I am not working any more (at least for pay!) but Paul is – most days he works about four hours for...

The Boys

One street over from us is an apartment building.  For about a year a group of young men has been living in one of the second floor apartments, and I admit that they have provided us with a fair bit of entertainment. We guess that they came here for work, leaving their families at home.  We never see them with women or children, and they do seem to create most of their own entertainment. Their favorite pastime is hanging around...

Expo Canino ’09

Yesterday was Expo Canino ’09. We knew it was something to do with art and dogs and not much else. Below is a gallery of images from the Expo. As always, we had issues with the time. Posters around town said 10 am to 10 pm. An item in the newspaper said it started at 3. We showed up around 4 or 4:30, and aside from a few artworks up nothing seemed to be going on. A friend said later...

New style graffiti

I’ve become really interested in the new style graffiti I’m seeing around town.  Some is freehand, artistic painting and some is done using stencils or even collage.  English words are sometimes used.  Anyway, I’ll let the pictures below speak for themselves. x x x x x x x x x x  ...

Mazatlan is ringing

Back in late November or early December the downtown Cathedral began ringing its bells every three hours. At first we thought these bell ringing songs were related to the Christmas season, but no. They are still going on, and are actually becoming a noted moment throughout the day. About a month ago they had a week or so when the 6 am one was so loud that it was waking us up. A petition went around our area spearheaded by...

Friday update

It’s just been regular life around here, but we like it. The weatherman in the newspaper says that it won’t be cold anymore, and will just get warmer and warmer.  This year has been very mild, I have only worn pants in the evenings a few times and never got out my socks and shoes like I did last year.  There has been some blustery weather though, but the temperatures were still mild even though the ocean got very choppy. ...

Flamenco!

Last Saturday we went to the Angela Peralta theater for Romance de Tablao, a flamenco performance by Compañia Profesional Miura Expresión Flamenca, a Méxican dance company. This was our first visit to the theater, and it almost wasn’t.  Paul had gone into the ticket office and inquired about tickets a couple of days before, and was told that they were sold out.  Lucky for us, our friends also inquired – the same morning – and were able to get tickets...

Magical December evening…

It was a magical night last night.  Friends came over…they brought quiche, we made salad and bought crusty bread and wine.  Laughing, good food, interesting conversation…made for an excellent evening. Then, after dinner and coffee we ambled over to the malecon for the free outdoor concert –  Mariachi Vargas with mariachi band Continental and the Mazatlán Symphony Orchestra. We got there after it had already started so the several hundred seats were filled, but we stood on the malecon with...