Daily Archives: June 14, 2007

Fiesta de San Antonio


Today started just as I described yesterday: first the church bells, then the trash bells, and I left out the LOUD herald of the gas refill truck. But then, suddenly, I heard an explosion! Then another – and another – and another… They seemed to be coming in groups of four or five. I tried to guess what it could be – it sounded like a cannon, or a backfiring vehicle. As I laid in bed, I wondered if perhaps there was some construction going on… After a while, it stopped.

Wheat went on to school earlier than I did, while I went to the mercado Independencia for a grocery refill. I bought tilapia, shrimp, and ham. I also bought honey, nopalitos (already chopped), avocados, eggs, tomatoes, onions and garlic. Feeling adventurous, I decided to buy some Romaine lettuce and some cilantro. I planned on washing these VERY thoroughly soaking them in Microdyne.

FYI: Microdyne, the most commonly used biocide, in the blue bottles, is actually silver! Both silver and copper have been used for centuries in water purification, where coins were thrown into drinking wells. Silver ions bond to the proteins in the cells of microorganisms, making them inactive. Though this method is quite effective, it needs long exposure time—yes, they do mean wait 15 minutes—and may not kill all organisms on vegetables, especially when you use it with tap water. Silver imparts little taste in water, and as far we know has minimal effects within the body. (from Centro Ecologico Akumal website).

So you CAN eat the veggies! I had my first lettuce in a lovely ham and Chihuahua cheese sandwich along with tomato slices. We’ll see how it all comes out… if you know what I mean.

After lunch and classes, I took a little nap. I was pretty groggy when I got up, but we walked to the school – lured by the internet. I did a little research on the Ex-Convento San Francisco, which is a museum of arts and crafts and found out it would be open until 8PM, so my husband and I went there. While on our way, MORE cannon fire erupted. This time, it was a lot louder and closer and was setting off car alarms right and left.

I found out from Tere, the woman who runs the Baden Powell Cafe, that the explosions (still don’t know of what?) were in honor of San Antonio de Padua. I sighed with relief and asked hopefully: “So they will stop after today?” She said, no, that they would go on tomorrow, too! Thanks, Saint Anthony – first you don’t help me find my passport, and now you are making me jumpy!

I found this other tidbit about Saint Anthony while researching this phenomenon:

In Portugal, Brazil, and some parts of Latin America he is recognized as the marriage saint. In some places, on his feast day (June 13) single women may buy a small statue of Saint Anthony and place (or bury) it upside down for a week, blackmailing him to only put him upright after he helps them find a good husband.

Are you listening? You know who I’m talking to… 😉

There was also a big demonstration in front of the Palacio Governial. We witnessed a long and quiet one last weekend, but this one was loud – with chanting. We exited around it and made our way to the museum.

San Francisco has exhibits of local crafts from different towns in Michoacan. On the second floor, there are small rooms set aside for artisans to sell their regional wares. There is a room for Paracho (Guitars and other thing), Tucuaro (masks), Santa Clara (copper work), etc. We peeked in and I tried to get one guy to make me a devil mask, but painted blue (Marietta Blue Devils!). He did not seem open to custom orders.

I will return to the museum later. I am particularly interested in the embroidery work of San Felipe de los Herreros. They create embroidery pieces telling stories. I will find some samples later.

Got to go – the internet is about to be cut off! The paleta del dia is chongos (a frozen form of chongos zamoranos.