I knew better! I knew better! I knew better! I made the list anyway. Some little things like, stop at the Blue Door Bakery. Buy the two newspapers. Photograph the children on Revolution Day. And, the list went on to include grabbing a quick bite of lunch, getting to the lecture series that started today, going grocery shopping. Well, you get the drift.
I literally leapt out of bed this morning and was ready to leave the house at 9:30! Typically I saunter down about 11AM and that allows plenty of time for all that I do on Friday. But, no, not today. Today was the day of the parade of the little Zapatas and all those from the Revolution. Little being the operative word. This desfile (parade) is made up of kindergarteners dressed as the super heroes of Mexico. The other is the Primavera parade in the spring which is butterflies, bumble bees, lady bugs and other assorted characters.
I had not had a chance to photograph the children in a few years. I was NOT going to miss them today.
Hence, my arrival at the parking garage on Mesones at 9:45! The manager asked me, I thought, if I knew
there was a parade today. "Si, si," I answered. Off I went not giving that comment another thought. I later realized he was telling me of the parade in case I was going to need to get the car in a couple of hours.
I found my place in the jardin after getting the newspapers, but not stopping at the bakery. I wanted to be sure to get a good viewing position for photographing.
It seemed a little odd that I was the only person on the bench, but I expected more people soon. Eventually a few showed up, but by now it was 11AM. And then I was told the usual little parade was coming from four different directions. Uh oh, how could that be? There aren't that many little kindergartners...........
Noon arrives. We can hear drums, but so far no marchers or little kids. Rats, I had to leave as I needed to get the car and get to where I was to start a lecture series. Not possible. One of the four points of the direction of the parade was the street where my car was parked.
Off I went, winding my way through the cobblestone streets heading in the direction that I needed to go. Hmmm, the weather had certainly warmed up since 9:30AM and I was walking as close to the building as possible to stay out of the sun which was now beaming down at around 80F or more.
Aha, I saw a taxi! I waved him down. Told him where I needed to go as time was flying past and the fun began. Almost all the streets were closed. But, he was so solicitous and determined to get me as close as possible to my destination that I began to chuckle. To this kid who was about 20, I probably looked like an ancient crone! He even drove backward down a street because he told me the police would not realize that he was driving onto the street but would think he was leaving the street. I was laughing out loud by this point and he would look at me from time to time and grin.
He got me to within a few doors of the restaurant and I jumped out, thanked him profusely and paid him. Grabbed a bite to eat, QUICKLY. As I came back out on the street, I could see a parade for as far as my eyes could see. Nary a small child marching anywhere. Instead, cheerleaders, people doing a CPR demonstration, the two ambulances of San Miguel and who knows what else. Where was Zapata? Not to be seen. At least not on this street.
Dashing into the Instituto for the first of three talks on the Mayans by a very knowledgeable archaeologist, many people were talking about their adventure in trying to get to the lecture on time with all the streets closed. There was a sense of determination and exhilaration that somehow we had outfoxed the powers to be.
I pulled out my list after the three hours at the Instituto, looked at it, crumpled it up and said, "Manana".
I then remembered that everyone always says, "Never, ever try to do more then THREE things in San Miguel in a day". No truer words were ever spoken.
By the way, here are a few photos from Revolution Day 2009!