Miss Smartypants, Bells a Ringing, Franciscan Processions

Well, after my bragging
about eating in the markets
Me, miss smartypants
Who thinks she is immune
To food poisoning,
And eats freely
In all the markets,
Came down with a two days of
Aches, pains, headaches
Body temperature
All out of whack.

However no stomach pains
Or other signs of turista,
Until day two
So I wasn’t sure.
At one point I wondered
If this was the first sign
Of some serious disease,
But it wasn’t, and Turista
I’m sure that’s what it was.

One should always be careful
When smugly talking about street food in public.
However much I love it,
Every now that then it gets me.
Have I learned my lesson?
Probably not!

So, I spent New years eve day
In bed, trying not to move
And New years day
In bed and on the couch
Reading “The Name of the Rose”
By Umberto Eco
name of the rose, umberto eco
A tome for sure, but I’m liking it
In spite of the 13th century
Jousting with the language.
Today, I made it outside,
It was well worth the effort.

First we ate lunch at Media Naranja
At the bottom of Hidalgo
Which we recommend
There’s a chef who studied
At the CIA in New York
Who is into flavors
GOOD flavors and
GOOD combinations.
However a loud, noisy
Table of 10 next to us
In a very small room.

I still felt good,
So we walked
To the Jardin, where we saw
Our friend Richard,
Pretending to read his paper
While actually sleeping away.

Then the military band
Came down Calle San Francisco

Here’s a movie of the procession around the Jardin
The churchbells went crazy
The incense followed,
Boy I love that smell,
Reminds me of the Catholic masses
I attended as a child.

All of this is followed by
The order of the Franciscans,
Children in monks robes,
Carried the street wide banner,
In front of this procession
The gold bust of San Antonio de Padua
Circled the streets and churches of San Miguel
For a new years blessing.
Men carrying tall glass candleholders
Are followed by men carrying the litter
Containing the gold bust.

All of this
is followed by throngs of parishoners
The church bells have not stopped ringing,
A red truck, carrying small sticks of bread
Wrapped with scriptures from the bible
Are handed out, and all this
Is brought up in the end
With an Insurgente policeman,
On Horseback

Insurgente Policeman

As they round the corner to the Parroquia
The bells go faster
Confetti is thrown from the bell towers,

The procession moves into the courtyard
Where short prayers are said,
then VIVA! VIVA San Antonio
VIVA Mexico

And around the plaza,
On to Canal street,
Where the traffic
Is already horrible
But everything stops
For the band
For the devout,
For the bust of San Antonio
For the parishoners

And the next stop,
The Iglesia las Monjas
Next to Bellas Artes
Where an outdoor altar is erected
altar, Las Monjas
In honor of the Franciscans
And Antonio de Padua.
More prayers are said
More music
Nuns in bright blue habits
Nuns in blue habits
And black head pieces
Nuns in blue
More altar boys join the procession
And they head down to
Their final stop,
Iglesia de San Antonio.

Running in to things like this
Is one of the things I love
About Mexico
You’d never see a religious procession
Stop the traffic, say, in San Francisco,
Unless they had a permit,
Which took 6 months to get.

At the end, in the Jardin
The bells were ringing like crazy
A man up in the towers
Was throwing confetti
From a plastic bag