After my Spanish class this morning, I stopped by La Cosecha, an organic market, to see if they had anything good. I bought some lettuce and was wandering around the courtyard to see if there was anything else of interest when I passed by a table of obviously American women and heard one of them say, "How could it happen?" Not wanting to hear anyone pontificate on that for the 17 zillionth time in three days, I beat a hasty retreat and headed over to El Llano park, which has a big market on Fridays.
I had some tacos de maciza (very tender, lean, roasted park leg), along with an agua de maracuya (passion fruit juice), which I ate with some of the challah I had bought at Pan Am bakery (it is surprisingly good bread; it's even braided and covered with sesame seeds). Then I bought some nieves de tejate. Nieves are ices or icies or sorbet or sherbet, depending on your interpretation and birthplace. Tejate is a Oaxacan drink made with corn, chocolate, coffee, cinnamon and who knows what else. Tejate-flavored ices are delicious, even better than the drink.
I walked around the park and noticed some big tents. Big tents, in Oaxaca, mean there's a fair of some sort going on. This one turned out to be a college fair, with rows of tables from all sorts of college programs. Not very interesting, but to liven things up they had a dance performance near the entrance. Different groups of dancers from different parts of the state were doing traditional folk dances, like they do during the Guelaguetza. I caught the Flor de Piña dance, which is Indigo's favorite. They do this Rockettes sort of thing, only with pineapples:
It was so lovely -- the dance, the clothes, the dancers, the tradition. From the back you can see how they do their hair, and more of the details of the embroidery on their dresses:
While I watched them I felt so overwhelmed with love for this city that I almost started to cry and had to leave. This place never stops being beautiful, fun, home.
Since Amy and Indigo are away for a week, I get to stay out late. On Friday and Saturday nights there are always a lot of free cultural events. I spent a little bit of time at one of the museums, which was presenting their annual calendar project. I'm not real clear on what it is, except that it involves lots of really good photos of Oaxaca, which they were projecting on an enormous screen. Then I went to a symphony concert. I've never heard Oaxaca's orchestra before, and they were surprisingly good (although I have to say the violins were not always exactly in tune, especially on the high notes). They played a piece by a Mexican composer named Juan Leon Mariscal, the Sibelious violin concerto (with an excellent soloist), and then Beethoven's Seventh Symphony. It was so nice that I took a rare selfie, with the balconies of the beautiful Teatro Macedonia Alcala in the background:
We leave Oaxaca in less than six weeks. It's going to be like tearing out a piece of my heart to leave this city.