Nephew, age 9, sister-in-law, age 50, child bride, age 51, and me, timeless.
It’s Holy Week, called Semana Santa hereabouts, and that prompted the tour.
Our mountain town is overrun with tourists, something that appeared unlikely earlier in the week, but yesterday they showed up in droves.
Few are foreigners, however, because foreigners are afraid to visit due to hysterically silly publicity above the border.
We took off from the Plaza Grande afoot, heading up the hill to the Basilica for our first stop. A Mass was under way, but we just barged in.
I gave my nephew one peso to light a candle. You can’t light real candles anymore, just electronic ones. Pathetic. No more good smell of burning wax.
If you exit through the main door and continue straight down the hill four blocks, you get to the Sanctuary, which is actually a big church, ancient like they all are here.
After a few minutes in the Sanctuary, we departed and walked three blocks to the San Francisco church. Yes, we have old churches all over the place. No shortage of places to kneel and weep.
And feel guilty about everything.
One of the candle gizmos didn’t work in San Francisco because coins were stuck in the slot. Nephew put my peso into a second gizmo, but nothing happened. It just ate the money like a Vegas slot machine. Nothing in return.
We wuz robbed!
I told Nephew this church is worthless. We left.
Two blocks farther on, we entered the San Juan Church. We didn’t see any candle gizmos there, so we just stayed a brief spell.
We would have visited more churches because we have plenty, God knows, but the parade was scheduled to start.
Last night’s parade consisted of Jesus statues from churches in the area. Big statues, little statues, mostly bloody statues, and there were “Christian prisoners” and “Roman soldiers” too.
Tonight there will be another parade, the highlight of which is a procession of people decked out like purple-hooded Klansmen. There is smoke and bells.
It’s fun to watch these things even if you’re not a Christian.
And God knows I’m not.