Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Oaxaca's annual dance festival, called the Guelaguetza, doesn't officially start until towards the end of the month, but there seem to be all sort of events leading up to it, starting in early July. The first event that we came across was a parade one evening in the center of town.

These huge balloon-like things seem to be made of cloth, and people dance and spin them around at the same time. They look heavy, and I heard that these parades can go on for miles, so it's definitely a feat of endurance. In fact, everything about this style of dancing seems to involve carrying heavy things, mostly on your head, while you dance.

There were also lots of these huge papier-mache (I think) puppets, whose faces undoubtedly represent specific people -- possibly historic figures, or maybe fictional ones. The people inside them spin around and around.

Here's a puppet dancer and a balloon dancer together.

There are also rows and rows of dancers in all sorts of different traditional costumes. The women wear these huge, beautifully embroidered skirts, and spend a lot of time twirling them around while they also balance those baskets on their heads.

There were also a few of these puppet-on-a-stick things. This one is a chapuline -- a type of grasshopper -- which is a local delicacy. You see a lot of women in traditional dress selling baskets full of fried chapulines. They always give free tastes, which I took advantage of the other day, much to the disgust of the rest of my family. They were very salty, and quite crunchy. I didn't buy any.


  1. Not only do I lack the nerve to try chapulines for myself, I also wouldn't kiss Joy until she'd brushed her teeth and I'd inspected to make sure there weren't any little legs caught in them.

  2. Well no one will say your stay won't be exciting. I could do with a little less excitement myself. have fun but be (a little more0 careful.