Wednesday, October 7, 2009

28th of September

We had a leisurely morning and didn't get out and about until after 10:00. There was a mass at the church followed by a procession through the streets. They took the statue of El Senor del Costado out of the church and walked through town surrounded by much of the congregation and townfolk. A band went with them playing music throughout. Every once in a while the procession would stop and prayers and blessings would be said. Many families had decorated their balconies in celebration of El Senor del Costado and the women had made streamers of flags to hang across the road. A man with a long bamboo pole accompanied the procession. His job was to lift the electrical lines and any other obstructions up so the statue could proceed. The procession itself took about an hour and a half.

Then after lunch there were cock fights. Doug and Ed went while I rested. They only stayed a short time and then left. The Peruvians love their cock fights and they love to bet on them. Gambling is big here. Doug and Ed could now say they had been to a cock fight, and will probably not go to another.

During the late afternoon, we were invited over to Luis' brother's home for "coffee." It was not only coffee, but a full meal with cuy, rice, beans and bread. And yes, these cute little creatures are raised in backyards for eating. Cuy is considered a basic meal for these people.

During the evening we drank beer with our hosts, Wilmer and his wife Magali as well as the mayor of a neighboring town, Luis, and Ed. After dark we went to the square to see the fireworks which were early because of the huge dance being put on. We went back to Wilmer's house and resumed the drinking until 2 a.m. Wilmer was asking us about raising children in the US as his impression was that the family unit was not strong there. He was also asking about what role the Native Americans had in today's society. It was interesting to hear his views and to recognize that his information about the society in the US was limited at best, and often erroneous.

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