San Cristobal de las Casas

We arrived in San Cristobal about 1:30 pm
We hired a taxi to take us to the hostal
Got a private room and went out to explore the town.

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San Cristobal is a beautiful,
Human scale town.
The buildings are not tall,
Everything is brightly painted in warm colors.
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We did a big loop around the town
Scoping out where everything was
Then ended up at the mercado de artesanias
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The craft here is gorgeous
Weavings and embroideries are the specialty.
The outlying villages of Zinacantan, Chamula,
San Andres, the Margaritas and Amatenango
All represented, and more.
Each village has it’s own unique style
Each person their own design on their clothing.

More to come…

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Amatenango
We had decided to visit Chamula today
Where the Catholic church
Is adorned with the traditional saints
Has no pews, but a floor filled with pine boughs
Coca cola bottles and candles
Where the local shamans
Provide pagan mayan rituals
Instead of the normal religious services.

However, once in the taxi
We discovered that Amatenango,
A small town with many artisans
Of renowned indigenous pottery
Which is about 45 minutes away
Would be a better bet for today.
The ride out is through rolling hills
Pine trees surrounding open fields
Dotted with family groups
Washing laundry in the streams
Women, dressed in the hairy skirts of Chamula
Tending their black sheep.

Our taxi driver, Pedro,
Is a friendly religious man
With typical religious objects
Hanging from the rear view mirror
A scapula,
A medallion of the virgin
A statue of a saint.

Amatenango is a small town,
Really, a small strip of buildings
With artisans selling their clay work
Renowned for their painted Jaguars,
they also sell utilitarian pieces
Bowls
Candleholders
Plates
Chickens and roosters
Some brightly painted
Many in the old style
The color of the clay
With Black.

Although the market is small
There are quite a few sellers.
It all seems to be the same work
However, it is all made by hand
One at a time
And you see differences
In the work as you explore
The various stalls

Amatenango Craft
Amatenango Craft

This is a typical Jaguar from the area
They come in all stances, sizes and various colors

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After Amatenango
Zoe fell ill from something she ate
I spent a day and a half
Wandering all over San Cristobal
Checking in every two hours
To see if she was ok.
I visited churches, markets and museums
And on the last day, we both wandered
Throughout the town
Thinking that this is a place
We will come back to



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