July 9, 2009

In transit to Oaxaca, Mexico

I am in the middle of a 6.5 hour bus ride to Oaxaca, so I have sometime to share a bit more w/ you.

Tuesday morning I took the subway down to coyoacan again and walked through the Viveros (park/nursery) on my way to the market.

I came upon people practicing bull fighting in the middle of the park. I was hypothesized, I was mesmerized. There was a young man, 15 maybe, practicing w/ the cape and an elder gentleman giving him instructions. There was another young man practicing and the elder guy who had a set of bull horns so they were both mimicking the rhythm and motion. I don't know how I feel about bull fighting as I have never experienced one. So I will reserve judgment until I have had more experiences w/ it. As I watch these guys practice, mimicking the motion of life and death in the middle of the park, under the mid day sun, the care taken in every turn, the articulation of each motion, the ritual, the sacrifice…I came upon beauty that rendered me speechless.

That same day, I spent the afternoon at the museo nacional de antropologia. I consider myself a curious student of anthropology but I am certainly not very well versed in it, my knowledge is skin deep at best. I must confess that I am not that interested in "objects" of the past. Clay bowls, urns, spear heads, they just don't get me that excited. If there is a way for the spears to tell me about the hunt, the wine goblet to describe the drunken debauchery, then I would be super excited.

Yet at the mueso, I found myself enthralled by all the tiny clay figures and their faces. These figures don't really serve a functional need yet they were made and I think that is part of the reason why I love them. All of faces were different, all of them expressive. I found the faces of history staring at me.

Charlie Grosso