Sunday, March 31, 2013

purity of sacrifice

My friends Lou and Wynn have been telling me about the mountain town of Villa Purificación for years.  But I have not made the trip up there on my own.

That changed yesterday.  Not the "on my own" part.  But I did get to the town.  With Lou and Wynn -- and my mother and brother.

The town has a long history -- founded in 1532.  Its church is reputed to be the third oldest in the country.  Even though much remodeled, the stone buttresses, that must be from an early version of the church, are still there.

Even with its potpourri of architectural styles, nothing jars the eyes.  It is almost like an historical timeline.  Smooth.  Transitional.

Most towns have attracted carnivals for Easter.  But, at the close of Easter celebrations, Villa Purificación will transition into its own festival.  Complete with bull fights on 9 April.  Maybe that is what has the carousel mermaids looking so concerned.

Villa Purificación has a traditional tie with our area of the Pacific coast.  Five years ago, I told you the tale about the Spanish setting sail from Barra de Navidad to establish a trade route with The Philippines  -- manila extract.

What I did not tell you in that post is that the return voyage was almost a disaster.  Many of the crew had died in the conquest of The Philippines.  Others died on the return voyage.

This photograph may look familiar.  It echoes the monument on the Barra seawall.

Where the Barra monument is celebratory, this monument has a note of tragedy in its recitation honoring the crew.  Because many of the lives that were lost began in the village.

Our visit was cursory.  Perhaps this summer I will return to visit the church and the rest of the town.  After all, many of its early inhabitants gave their all for Mexico's ultimate prosperity.

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