Sunday, September 20, 2015

Fiesta Patrias in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

Seldom is a holiday just one day in San Miguel.  This past week was a prime example of that.

Preparing had begun weeks before with flags and buntings and medallions being installed on as many non-moving buildings as possible.  Then add to that all the people buying flags for their homes, funny hats
and those annoying high pitched horns that seem to show up this time of the year.  In red, white and green, of course.

The entire primary school of students across the road from me were given one of those horns at about 8:15AM on Tuesday morning.  The din of horns went on until they were released early from school that
day.  But, even now, every so often, I hear one.  They are unmistakable.

The flags and decorations have added a festive flare to the town.  I always thought that people in the USA were the most patriotic, but I must say, patriotism in Mexico is just as beautiful to see and very prevalent.

Tuesday evening the big El Grito was said by the current mayor who leaves office next month.  It was on the balcony of the Allende house.  Allende was one of the leader's of the revolution so you can imagine how poignant that moment is every year.  It is said that 30,000 people were expected in the jardin........Needless to say, I was not one of them but watched it on webcam from the safety and quiet of my computer in my home.  Crowds do not thrill me - at least when I'm among them.  And, believe me they were packed in like sardines.

Spectacular fireworks accompany every celebration in Mexico and especially San Miguel..........on a continual basis..........morning and night.  There were spectacular fireworks on Tuesday night that began at 11PM.

Wednesday was the military parades and the students marching in uniforms with bugles and drums.  Fireworks began at 10PM that night.

Thursday was the reenactment of the Insurgents riding into San Miguel on horseback - about 300 horses and their riders.  Some in costume, others not.  A ragtag group.

By Friday, I figured all the parades and fireworks were done.  I headed into town about 10:15 in the morning to take care of banking, newspapers, and other assorted tasks.  Ooops, as I turned the corner by the jardin and saw people sitting on the walls and steps of the jardin, I knew a parade must be coming.  Then I heard the sirens and there was no doubt. 

Upon arriving to my next appointment I asked everyone if anyone knew what this parade was about and not a single local Mexican knew what it was about.  When finished with that task, I headed to the jardin to see
WHAT the parade was about.  It was the blessing of the firetrucks and ambulances in front of the Parroquia!
All kinds of things from the taxis to school equipment and evidently the safety vehicles are blessed at some time during the year.

Add to that, there were little kindergartners dressed as doctors, nurses, lab techs, firemen and they rode in the ambulances  and on the fire truck.  By the way, the firetruck and ambulance are relatively new additions to the scene of San Miguel.
Sadly I did not get photos of all the children in the parade, but did manage to catch this precious little girl running back and forth in the jardin in her nurse uniform.  Love the look of pure innocence and joy on her little face.  The house behind her was Allende's home.  That is a statue of him on the wall and the balcony to the left of the statue is where the El Grito is said.   Now there is a relatively new museum on the first floor.

The festivities are over for the time being.  It won't be long, about two weeks, until everything gears back up for the feast of St. Michael the Archangel.  He is the patron saint of San Miguel.  It is a magnificent time to be here for all the indigenous dancers who come to dance and parade all over centro along with the fireworks, of course.

Life is never dull in San Miguel!


Retired Teacher said...

They certainly know how to throw a fiesta in Mexico!
I can't imagine 30,000 people in the "jardín"! I would be like you, and stay away. I'm getting to the point where I don't handle crowds very well either.

Scott said...

I love reading your current blog posts (and many others in MX, as you might have seen) and am still only reviewing yours through 2008. I thoroughly enjoy how many different celebrations the Mexican people revel in. Greetings from North of Houston!

Babs said...

Indeed Bill, there is ALWAYS some kind of celebration going on. Today we were talking about how many days we have until the next one! Yup, next keeps life very interesting.

Babs said...

Scott, glad you're enjoying the blog. I so enjoy writing it and having people let me know they are reading it! It's true there are SO many celebration, but even more wonderful is that life is a celebration here all the time. Fiesta or not.

I tickled that you have read all the way back to 2008! Wow........

Greetings to North Houston........have family in that neck of the woods! Hope to be up there in the next couple of months, when it cools off, ha.

Scott said...

Yes, it has been hot. Lots of rain in May, but few drops since then for me. But North of Houston meant way North. I'm in Fort Worth. Other than more recent posts I am going from your first writings forward to get caught up. Sadly, Google/Blogger changed server names and for many of your older posts, the images, the links to them are no longer correct.

I've seen places in and around SMA on a PBS cooking show named "Pati's Mexican Table". A recent episode showed a bakery named Bove that really looked great.She's originally from Mexico City though about 18 years ago was proposed to in SMA. Now is an expat who lives in MD, though they come back to Mexico frequently.

Babs said...

Hi Scott. The reason the photos aren't showing on the earlier posts is that my old computer crashed and for some reason, the articles could be retrieved, but the photos were lost, unfortunately. The good news is most of those photos were hard copy photos that I scanned into the post and I could go back, ha, and re introduce them, but doubtful I would ever do that.

I saw "Pati's Mexican Table" on PBS once. Interesting show. I think Bove' might still be around. We have all kinds of great bakeries......and lots of super restaurants as well.

Ft. Worth is a bit north of Houston, ha. Back in the late 80's I had a lot of design work in downtown Fort Worth and other parts of town as well. Fun place.........

Thanks for posting. I'll be writing by 1500th post tomorrow! Amazing.