Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Day of the Dead - An Urban Celebration

Each area you travel to in Mexico has similar, but distinct ways, of celebrating the return of the souls of the departed. The travel from rural to urban is somewhat disconcerting as the urban altars are, in many instances, "decorations" and not tied to any family or departed person, but more about a celebration of the day. With that said, I traveled to the mercado in Puebla to see if there were altars made by the people to honor certain persons. I was honored and rewarded to see this beautiful woman gathering flowers to either take home for her own family altar or possibly she was selling them. As I wandered through the mercado teeming with activity, altars were being made, people were buying flowers and I came upon this altar being completed by women and a young man. It is honoring the previous Pope who is much admired and revered in Mexico. Canonization is proceeding, at the urging of the Mexican people, to declare Pope John, a saint. With that in mind, I found this altar very poignant.
On my way into a restaurant for comida, this altar greeted our group and was beautifully executed as a celebratory altar.
And this last photo was taken at the municipal building across from the zocalo. To say it was grandiose would be an understatement. It filled the room. It had to be about twenty feet long!
Again, quite an altar, but somehow missing the point that the simple altars in the countryside communicate to the observer.
For photos of the simple altars in the Sierra Gorda, click on November 2007 and go to November 18, 2007. There you will see the simple altars using wild orchids from that region to cover the altars. Breathtakingly beautiful.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I need to repeat what Wayne said a few posts ago. I am so glad that you figured out how to post photos from your new camera. These are great.