Monday, November 7, 2022

2022 11 Oaxaca With Michael deMeng Dia Tres

Friday, October 28, 2022

Breakfast was at 7:00 a.m. with friends on the patio in the hotel as is the tradition of this group. I made a run for more things to drink before heading out for a walkabout.

Today I went up the Pan American Highway and into the neighborhood between our hotel and El Auditorio Guelaguetza, the dance pavilion that sits on the top of the hillside. 

Walkabout #4

A foggy Oaxaca from along the Pan-American Highway

Every time I come to Oaxaca I remember that Mexico will not forget the 43 college students who "disappeared" in 2014

I found this VW Beetle through the window in an artist's studio

Class began at 10:00 a.m. with Michael deMeng introducing the traditions of Dia de los Muertos and showing the class the basics for beginning our calacas. 

Our instructor Michael deMeng

Our tour leader Colleen Darling

Our assistant tour leader Mija Marie

Calacas are the skeletons associated with the celebration of Dia de los Muertos and this year we were encouraged to make them musicians as music is such an integral part of the celebration. Here is Michael's class sample to inspire us.

Above is my workspace. I deliberately did not bring a lot with me (toy figures, small boxes,  brushes and paint) with the idea that I could get what I wanted in Oaxaca. Below is the workshop at the Holiday Inn Historico Centro.

We took a break for lunch at 1:00 p.m. at La Fogencita, an Argentinian restaurant very near our hotel. After lunch I went on a search (not successful for a variety of reasons) for some art supplies but I did manage to buy a cool tee shirt and a spare card for my camera. Speaking of the camera, I took these photos on my second walkabout of the day.

Walkabout #5

While on my walk, I picked up this tin clarinet player to represent my Pop on the class ofrenda. More on that later. 

I returned to the workshop at about 4:00 p.m. and put three hours working on my art.

The Welcome Dinner began with the group gathering in the lobby at 7:00 p.m. for what would normally be a quick walk to the restaurant La Casa de Oaxaca off the zocalo. But, we kept running into some pesky comparsas.

Not sure if I was shooting Alan and the skull photobombed me
or the other way around

The Welcome Dinner was special for the food but also because Colleen Darling, who has led Michael’s Oaxaca tours for 15 times announced her retirement. She was toasted and Michael gave her a special send off with a mirror of the Wizard of Oz’s speech to the three companions of Dorothy.

Assuming the tour duties next year is Mija Andrade who is here this year to assist Colleen. She thinks it is all fun and games now...just wait.

After dinner I went for a walk on the alcala to the zocalo and took the following pictures until my battery died. Trust me, I won’t forget to take the backup with me any other night.

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