Posts Tagged ‘torito’

Sunday’s walk went from blue to pink — with a few colors in between.

The colors were kind of like my mood over the course of two hours of walking.

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The announcement came at midnight with the ringing of the Cathedral’s bells and explosions of cohetes (rockets).  Today el Señor del Rayo is having his day!  Like Guelaguetza, Noche de Rabanós (Night of the Radishes), and Día de la Samaritana (Good Samaritan Day), this is an “only in Oaxaca” celebration.

Señor del Rayo crucifix surrounded by lilies.

The carving of Christ on the Cross was brought to Oaxaca during the 16th century and was placed in the temple of San Juan de Dios, a church which had adobe walls and a straw (or possibly wood) roof.  Legend has it that lightning struck the church and everything was destroyed, save for this figurine.  Un milagro!  It was christened Señor del Rayo (Lord of Lightning), was given its own chapel in the newly built cathedral, and has been much venerated ever since.

Pillars covered in multicolored lilies

On Sunday, October 21, el Señor del Rayo is moved from his capilla (last chapel on the left) to the main altar.  The cathedral fills with lilies (the scent “breathtaking”), and the faithful flock to pray before Señor del Rayo.  When one inhales the fragrance, one exhales a heavenly, “ahhhh…”

Close-up of orange, yellow, and lavender lilies covering a pillar

Like all good Mexican celebrations, be they religious or secular, there will be pirotécnicos tonight.  Toritos de luces (little paper-mache bulls wired with fireworks) have begun gathering.

Papermache bull (tornito)

And, as I write, the frame of the castillo below has been raised to its “upright and locked position,” its various spinning appendages have been affixed, and gunpowder tracks are waiting to be lit.

Main structure of a "castillo" laying on its side.

Alas, the action doesn’t begin until around 10:00 PM.  The spirit is willing, but it’s been a busy day, and this “too too solid flesh” is looking forward to melting into her bed.  Think I’ll just watch the fireworks from the terrace.  I know, what a wimp!!!

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