Day 3 — Marching Bands and Plants

Oof. It was late last night and I post­ed this entry to the wrong blog. So here it is about 12 hours late.

For break­fast this morn­ing we had march­ing bands. One of the largest of the local high schools had their parade to the zoco­lo in hon­or of the Bicen­ten­ni­al.

First there was a bit of a pro­fes­sion­al band (bor­ing) and then the school ban­ner.

Moises Saenz Garza

Moi­ses Saenz Garza High­school

Fol­lowed by the school’s drum corps…

they love drums here

rat-a-tat

… and then the stu­dent body. Loose­ly orga­nized, and very hap­py to wave and say hel­lo and make fun­ny faces at the folks peer­ing out of the Casa’s front door.

peace to you too

smiles and hel­los for every­one

The bulk of the day was tak­en up with a tour of the botan­i­cal gar­dens at San­to Domin­go. Jardín Etnobotáni­co de Oax­a­ca.

I’m still work­ing on get­ting all the pic­tures sort­ed out. There will be a nice big gallery of them lat­er this week. But for now here are a hand­ful to give you a feel for the gar­den and its plants.

The tour starts with a dis­cus­sion of the native food plants. The tri­umvi­rate of squash, beans, and corn. These are squash plants.

squash growing in the foreground

squash, beans, and corn

In the back­ground are bunch­es of the large marigolds that dec­o­rate the altars at Muer­tos. I am death­ly aller­gic to them.

This lit­tle red flower on the oth­er hand doesn’t make me sneeze. It’s a dahlia. Seri­ous­ly. All those fan­cy gar­den flow­ers (Hi Elise!) have been bred from one lit­tle red flower.

awfully nice for a single

the orig­i­nal dahlia

Of the com­mon trees in Oax­a­ca the one that I can always iden­ti­fy with­out a doubt is the pochote. But when you’re look­ing at some­thing with points like this…

prickly

unmis­tak­able thorns

The gar­dens are locat­ed behind the build­ings of the Monastery of San­to Domin­go. The church’s walls pro­vide a back­drop for the large col­lec­tion of dry eco-sys­tem plants.

straight lines

typ­i­cal water chan­nel

Maguey cac­tus. The source of mescal/tequilla. Also just plain pret­ty.

arty

As we were leav­ing the gar­dens and head­ing toward lunch we ran into anoth­er march­ing band. This one was fol­lowed by dancers.

dancing ladies!

the flow­ers are par­tic­u­lar­ly nice

Mean­while Jim would like you to know that he is hard at work cat­a­loging the var­i­ous motor trans­port options in the area. Today, I think it’s work­ing bikes.

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