Colonia San Antonio, photography, San Miguel de Allende

¡Que tengas una feliz navidad!

The Christmas tree went up yesterday in the public square. Right beside the pink gothic Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel here in San Miguel de Allende.

Bit by bit, the city begins to embrace the holiday.

All of the streets leading into the Jardin Principal are strung with tin stars and twinkling lights. The gazebo and trees in the little park are a Christmas wonderland.

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photography, San Miguel de Allende

Once upon a time …

In the land of Mexico, princesses abound.

Here are some to see. Two from San Miguel de Allende. Two from Mexico City.

So much casual beauty, posing before the photographer’s lens.

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photography, San Miguel de Allende, Writings

Hail to the (little) chief

So many many people pose on the steps of the Parroquia de San Miguel Arcangel, for so many reasons.

Social media queens and generational portraits, tourists and families, engaged couples and newlyweds, tarts and saints, models and misfits, quinceañeras and brides.

The backdrop is so iconic that it lends gravitas to any poser. The pink spires seal a special moment in the lives of so many, day after day after day. People clearly travel a long way just to pose in front of this church.

This youngster was working the steps this morning, for Dad and his iPhone and clearly enjoying the process. This felt like a coming-of-age moment for an indigenous tribe’s future leader.

I love seeing people having fun with photos in the public square.

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San Miguel de Allende, Writings

Glorious voices lift heaven-ward in the San Miguel premiere of Michael Hoppé’s ‘Requiem for Peace and Reconciliation’

Michael and Monica Hoppé watch the performance of his “Requiem for Peace and Reconciliation.” on Wednesday afternoon in the Templo de la Tercera Orden in Centro.

“You know, I haven’t even heard it yet. I’m as clueless as everyone else today! I don’t know what to expect.”

The speaker on Wednesday afternoon was Michael Hoppé and the occasion was the San Miguel de Allende premiere of his sonorous and introspective Latin Mass for chorus and strings, “Requiem for Peace and Reconciliation.”

The perfect music for Dia de Muertos and these very troubled times.

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photography, San Miguel de Allende, Writings

Dia de Muertos parade No. 2: Dead can dance

I should know better, but I showed up at 5 p.m. today anyway for the start of San Miguel de Allende’s second Day of the Dead parade in as many days.

(Here are photos from Tuesday night’s Rosewood Hotel Dia de Muertos parade.)

And there were very very few people on Calle El Cardo, the supposed staging area. And very few of those people looked like they would be marching in a parade. Although, some of those people were horses, meant to pull carriages so that was a good sign. And several bands were sitting in the shade where ever they could find it up and down the street.

There were a lot of people on cell phones typing in things like “Where does the parade start?”

It dawned on me soon enough.

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photography, San Miguel de Allende, Writings

Night of the living-it-up dead

Parading around as elegantly dressed skeletons is so much fun in San Miguel de Allende that apparently, it takes two parades over two days to fit it all in this year.

In the past, it was sufficient to stage one parade of promenading Calaveras, Catrinas, and Catrins — and a variety of other-worldly subsets in various manifestations of theatricality.

Last year, after the wastelands of Covid had subsided and a rebirth of traditions signaled a new dawn, the annual Dia de Muertos parade was a joyous traffic jam of humanity. Skeletons paraded en mass down the Ancha. Preciously costumed Catrinas and their cohorts, led by a masterful and exuberant Mariachi band, exited the sanctuary of the Rosewood and paraded toward the Ancha.

The two masses converged and ground to a halt as paraders funneled up the narrower Zacateras, made narrower by the density of the watchers on both sides of the road. It was a slow slog up to the Jardin where seeing and being seen is the endgame of the evening.

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photography, San Miguel de Allende, Writings

Sunday sunset over San Miguel

People are taking to the rooftops of San Miguel like never before. Some head there to dine. Some to drink and dance. Some to watch the sunset. Some to watch the center of San Miguel transform into something else almost on the hour. Some, just to stop time for a little while.

We were on a rooftop on Sunday to watch two dear friends get married.

The sunset, the incredible cloud formation, the view — that was all extra.

I couldn’t resist rushing this photo onto Facebook to share but now it is in its proper place — a big and beautiful display on the blog.

If you like people-watching, those people dining across the street are there for you. Notice the two women with their Dia de Muertos headdresses on, the couples dining alone, the tables of friends. The unspoken anticipation that soon lamps will be lit and seats will be filled with banter, laughter, quiet sips of wine, brow-knitting scans of the menu, scurrying waiters, and exuberant music.

The audience is assembling. The air will soon cool. The lights are about to dim. The curtain is about to rise.

And the show — and San Miguel is a bona-fide long-running show — is about to begin on another night in Centro.

The photo was taken from Terraza Trinitate on Cuna de Allende 10, Zona Centro, San Miguel de Allende.
The view across the street is part of the lively rooftop dining scene in Centro.

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Memoirs -- fact and fiction, San Miguel de Allende, Uncategorized, Writings

That time Jerry Lee Lewis talked to God atop the Peabody Hotel in Memphis — and God listened

This is Jerry Lee Lewis, live in England, in 1964. It is all-video, all-animal energy, all-Jerry Lee. Punk before punk was ever a word.

Like the kids in this video, I stood at the very edge of Jerry Lee’s piano while he played. Inches from the 88th key and his left hand.

The year was 1989 though, not 1964, and the setting was more subdued.

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Colonia San Antonio, photography, San Miguel de Allende, Writings

Farm fresh, a fountain fantasia, and ‘love lies bleeding’

Life is like a box of farm-fresh vegetables. You never know what you are going to get.

I know. I know. I can hear Rose Alcantara’s voice already, “Don’t play with your food!”

I can’t help it. Such an abundance. It demands a shot at Still Life before it is reduced to gourmet.

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