The City of La Paz was sponsoring the "6th Festival Internacionnal de Arte y Cultura por la Pax" these past few days. We cycled downtown to see some of the activities last night. There were dance performances scheduled from 17:00 to 21:00 horas; we thought we'd catch the earlier ones and enjoy the sunset from the downtown malecon. The wide sidewalk brings out families, tourists, cruisers, to stroll along the waterfront, meet friends, take in the sights and enjoy the lovely evenings.
While we waited for events to begin, we propped the bikes up outside the open air restaurant of the La Perla hotel and had a great view of the beach area in front of the Muelle Fiscal. That is a long pier which houses API, in effect the harbour master, to whom anyone anchored should be paying fees for the privilege, hence the 'fiscal' muelle title. We sipped cold cervezas and shared a plate of ceviche while we enjoyed the view in comfort.
|Highly decorated ceremonial costume|
"Totonac myth tells of a time when there was a drought, and food and water grew scarce on earth. Five young men decided they had to send a message to Xipe Totec, god of fertility, so that the rains would return and nurture the soil and their crops would again flourish. They entered the forest and searched for the tallest and straightest tree. When they found the perfect tree, they stayed with it overnight, fasting and praying for the tree to help them in their purpose. Blessing the tree, then cut it and took it to the village next day avoiding touching the earth. The men stripped the tree of its leaves and branches, dug a hole to stand it upright, then blessed the site with ritual offerings. The me adorned their bodies with feathers so that they appeared like birds to Xipe Totec, in hope of atracting the attention of god to their important request. With vines wrapped around their waists, secured to the pole and made their plea to fly with the haunting sound of the flute and drum."
|Voladores descend - ropes tied around their feet|
|El Caporal - the flute player - begins his descent|