Dia de los Muertos – Death’s Joyful Mourning

One thing that makes Mexico unique among nations of the world is how the people there deal with the subject of death. Like all cultures, Mexicans mourn the passing of a family member or loved one, but in Mexico they do not fear death, they laugh at it. Death is such a part of life that Mexicans give their children skeleton toys and little coffins to play with. And every year from October 31st to November 2nd they celebrate death … READ MORE – CLICK HERE

Monte Albán, the Most Famous Zapotec Temple

Mexico has a long history and diverse population, stretching back thousands of years that include more than 60 indigenous cultures. One of the largest of those groups, Zapotecs, concentrated in the southern state of Oaxaca. The most famous remnant of their glory days – and surely the most breathtaking – is Monte Albán, a sprawling complex just a few miles outside the city of Oaxaca. But Monte Albán is a mystery in a number of respects. Located 1,200 feet above … READ MORE – CLICK HERE

Mitla – Zapotec Center of Religion

What makes Mitla an important archaeological site is not its size or the number of people who lived there, but because it was the main religious center for the Zapotecs who built it and also because of the fretwork of geometric patterns carved into the stone walls of the buildings that are found nowhere else in Mexico. Oaxaca, Mexico, for all its beauty, is a somewhat out-of-the-way locale. But for Zapotecs, who began their ascendance some 2,500 years ago, the … READ MORE – CLICK HERE

El Tule, One of the Largest Trees in the World

Scientific surveys have recently estimated as many as three trillion trees grow all over the world. But out of that mind-boggling number, only a handful of specimens are majestic enough to be considered iconic. The tree with the largest trunk girth on earth, El Arbol del Tule, grows in a church courtyard in the small village of Santa Maria del Tule in the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca. Certainly there are taller trees, ones with a larger volumes of wood, … READ MORE – CLICK HERE

Mezcal, Made Well in Oaxaca, Mexico

Once upon a time, mezcal had a bad rap. Not good enough to include in a margarita, it was once viewed as a cheap, shabby, rotgut cousin of tequila where shots were pounded down and fights broke out over who got to eat the worm (larvae, actually). But in the past decade or two the spirit is enjoying a well-deserved renaissance. Gulping and quaffing is now sipping and savoring, as aficionados discern the subtle smokiness of a spirit that has … READ MORE – CLICK HERE

The Rugs of Teotitlan de Valle–Woven Beauty

The hand weavings of the Zapotecs who live in the small village of Teotitlan de Valle, a short drive east of Oaxaca in the southern Mexican state of the same name, draw upon centuries of experience, combined with an inspiring sense of design, and a scientist’s knowledge of chemistry, result in some of the finest wool rugs in the world. Since before the time of Montezuma, Zapotecs in Oaxaca have been weaving trade and tribute goods, primarily from cotton. When … READ MORE – CLICK HERE

San Miguel de Allende Hosts Great Parades

To calculate how much a city might love a parade, take the population, divide by the number of parades and finally, factor in the total number of parade participants. By those measures San Miguel de Allende may well be one of the most parade-loving towns in the world. Parades here are punctuated with fireworks, elaborate costumes and dancing that would make celebrations in New York City, New Orleans or Pasadena, CA envious. And during some of San Miguel’s parades, hundreds … READ MORE – CLICK HERE