A New Year’s Day Tour

Copied from the tour website: “Leave the tourist track behind on this visit to the indigenous communities of the Tzotzil ethnic group of Mexico.  The tour includes a visit to the town of San Juan Chamula to see the fusion of contemporary and ancient Mayan traditions, and a tour of Zinacantan to see locals working pre-Columbian waist looms and to sample handmade tortillas and regional drinks.”

I wanted to do this tour on a Sunday because I heard the church was most amazing then. Amazing is not strong enough to express how AMAZING it was to see. There’s a wikipedia article that talks about San Juan Chamula and the church – I’m having a problem figuring out how to summarize it and include some of the guide’s stories too.

One important thing to mention is that absolutely no photos are allowed inside the church and taking pictures of people without asking is highly discouraged. The next two pictures are not mine.

Not My Photo: the city has it’s own police, the men in white. The men in red and black are religious celebrants. We did see them gathered but I didn’t take a picture.

Not My Photo: a picture someone posted from inside the church. When we were there it looked like this only more crowded and the church is much larger than it seems here.

The cemetery in San Juan Chamula, oh yes, there is a story here too.

Our guide.

From the tour’s website, the top three in Chamula and the bottom three in Zinacantan.

The first two garments represent the clothing of the village ‘before’. Once Zinacantan became a flower-growing center they began wearing clothing heavily embroidered with flowers, the second two garments. Around this room were examples of the clothing from the surrounding villages. You hear often how among the indigenous people everyone can recognize another’s home village by their clothes. We visited two indigenous villages and now I recognize people from there too.

A nice touch – samples of the local liquor.

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On another topic, this is Sunday New Year’s Morning on the Andador. Perfectly cleaned up from the night before.

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Left foot OK, right foot not so OK, but still I’m moving along.

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