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Mexico and Socks

August 9, 2005

I’m home!

There’s nothing like a busy summer of traveling to make me appreciate home. The trip to Mexico City was mostly good. Unfortunatly Christer and I both got pretty sick halfway through. That slowed us down quite a bit, and we didn’t see everything we wanted to see around the city. But we did succeed in visiting with Christer’s sister who’s lived in Mexico for the past 3 years, and our friends we met when they were in school in Wisconsin who are just now moving back home to Mexico. They all had a chance to show off some of their favorite parts of the city, we had a chance to do some catching up, it was good.

One site-seeing highlight for me was visiting the Basilica where the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe is displayed. I’m not Catholic, but will admit some facination with Mary, and her appearance in the 1500’s in Mexico is a good story. Here’s one version. The shorter version is that Mary appeared to a Native American man on the site of a temple to an older goddess. She had dark skin and spoke to him in his own language. The man had a hard time explaining all this to the Spanish bishop, and so eventually Mary gave him the image, which appeared miraculously on his tunic, to convince the bishop. Her appearance is credited with convincing the native people of Mexico and Latin America that Catholicism was not just the religion of their conquerors, but also could hold meaning for them. As such this site is important to Mexico–both as a religious place and as a patriotic place where the Spanish and indiginous cultures merged. We visited the Basilica on our first full day in Mexico, and I think it was my favorite bit of the trip.

Mary was on display at the center of the church at the focus of worship. Around back you could stand on a moving walkway under the alter and look up at her. So the picture isn’t so good–but seeing the picture along with so many pilgrims, even from far away, was pretty interesting.

Several slow days when we were sick meant lots of time for reading and knitting. I’ve now made it through all 6 Harry Potter books, and I got this far along my Mexico socks:

Since returning Sunday night I’ve been resting, finishing up the Mexico socks, enjoying tap water, and playing with all the new toys that showed up in my mailbox from swaps while I was gone. I’ll post more about those tomorrow.

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