Christmas in San Cristobal de Las Casas seems more focused on the birth of Jesus than on consumer consumption. There are very few American tourists this time of year, but there are a lot of Mexican families from other cities and states. I love sitting in el parque (zocalo) on a bench and watching everyone coming and going.
I had a lovely time today when I took a wrong turn looking for some Argentine empanadas and wandered into the middle of an exhibit of nacimientos de navidad. Nativity dioramas! Lots of them.
And lots of families visiting them, laughing, pointing to this and that. The children and parents in a state of pure delight. I stood behind them silently taking in their joy.
One diorama was easily 200 sq. feet large! Set behind glass it was nearly all of the village of Bethlehem. Complete with rabbits, turtles, ducks, camels, sheep. Tiny houses with kitchens, stoves, elaborately constructed miniature furniture…EVERYTHING! And…a starry sky that turned from night to dawn to dusk! Magical & enchanting.
Shelley Noble I thought of you. You would have loved it!
I can’t create links when blogging from my iPad, but go to Notes From Halfland in my sidebar to see the small worlds Shelley builds.
Earlier in the day I found myself in a church and before I knew it the church had filled and a wedding had begun. I was kind of stuck. Like when you accidently wind up in a funeral procession of cars. Like that. Then a fine band of mariachis started playing, the bride & groom walked down the aisle. I stood I sat I stood I sat with the rest of the congregation in their finest evening slash wedding wear. I crept out of my pew past 2 young ladies wearing dangerously high heels and made it to safety. Whew. All the way to the back of the church where 3 Mayan women stood taking a picture with a pink cell phone. What the hell, I thought, and took my camera out and snapped a picture too.
Then I went to the Amber Museum next door.
Headed to the bathroom.
Took one look in the mirror and let out a squeal.
My long sleeve button down shirt was inside out, the big washing instruction tag sticking out near my hip.
An hour later I was headed for home. My shirt right-side out. A bag of hot Argentine empandas swinging from my hand.
It’s a good life, this one. I’m glad you’re along for the ride.
Sent from my iPad
Leslie Gardiner says
I so LOVE being along for the ride! Leslie
Judy H. says
These remind me of Italian presepios, which I’ve been fascinated by for years (and have always wanted to make one of my own). Wonderful! Merry Christmas to you, Mary Ann!
Nancy Lynn says
You are such a delight to follow along with your travels and experiences. Hope you continue to have a marvelous trip. HAppy Holidays.
Carol Kitchell says
Oh, you make me smile and laugh. What a delight you are! I’m so enjoying “my trip with Mary Ann.”
the diaromas are wonderful. they must take forever to make. funny shirt story. i’m suprised that there are not more americans there for the warm weather. sounds good to me.
Jessica Porterfield says
You crack me up with your wardrobe malfunctions. Reminds me of the time my dress got caught in my pantyhose and no one told me for awhile. Your pictures are stunning and your commentary is brilliant to my mind.
It’s a lovely thing Mexicans do: build miniature worlds… I am in love with all those little bits and tids that I find in people of Mexican origine. I also nearly died the day that Mariachi was officially for sale in the American iTunes store. Dare I say that I must be the Belgian with the largest collection of Mariachi music in the country? My sons think I am crazy. Give me a mariachi band and I am happy. I would say that your Christmas trip is one out of a dream and that I totally dig it how you can travel there and see all those wonderful sights. You are one lucky beast! ;o)))
Susie LaFond says
Oh Mary Ann these are all truly delightful and cool. I am in awe, but don’t get me started on Nativity diorama’s as I had to build a full size stable about 8ft high and about 11 feet long, all out of very sturdy wood beams; it was for my DD’ Toys for Tots benefit performance from their dance studio. A real life small pony could have lived in it along with the babe tucked safely into a sturdy wood cradle, there was hay, and a north star up in the heavens wired with a battery pack so it could be danced with across the stage. And oh then there were the 3 wisemen’s gifts (i nicked named the 3 wise guys (no disrespect intended)glass bottles purchased at a thrift shop and rubbed and rubbed with golden restoration wax paste and then buffed and buffed to shine and sparkle and then lots of bling was added. In the end it was quite a site, but ever since I created it, every time I see a diorama or a nativity scene I find myself nodding with understanding, it takes alot to prepare for a child’s birth…I consider it a form of pre arrival nesting, about the same thing mothers do when they know a birth is imminent so there you go…if you decorate for Christmas, what you’ve really done is experience a form of nesting and preperation, it’s all about the gathering up those you love and pull em around ya and being grateful you have them in your life. Also grateful that at the end of the day or evening or a night or two later that they all get to go home. Wink. LOL. And a giggle too. I love spending time with the fam but I do so LOVe my quiet, down time. Merry Christmas Mary Ann.
Dear Mary Ann – I love you. You crack me up. Love tagging along on your adventures with my sleeping three year old son draped over my lap. Thank you so much for sharing and Merry Christmas from Australia!