The cabalgata is a procession of horses. Each town and village here has at least one per year, and while it is exciting, I would not recommend having to drive through or conduct any business during this time unless you are going for the sole purpose of seeing this event. Roads into town are blocked out of necessity as the procession of horses will proceed down the highway and into the town for the festivities.
The night began with a procession of people bringing images of the Virgin of Guadalupe through the streets. You can see one large banner, and on a truck is being transported a large heart with a crown and a picture of the Virgin under the crown.
Behind this part of the procession are the Danza Azteca de Cofradía, the Aztec Dancers of Cofradía. They are so amazing to me for several reasons. They dance vigorously in the street with sandals on their feet, and they are dancing on cobblestones and it is not a flat surface. It is a very bumpy road. In addition, it is dark, so normally I walk carefully so as not to slip on the rounded surface of these stones, and they are keeping step with each other in the dark.
Then we see a car bearing the Queen of Cofradía – la Reina de Cofradía. Every year there is a new queen, and this year it is Jessi. It seems like just about every town and village has these royals. A neighbor joked to me that even though I am a foreigner, there is one election in which I can vote, and that is for our queen.
And oops! Shame on me. I did not vote in this election…..
In addition, before we see the horses, there are very large mannequins (for lack of a better word), this night of a man and a woman dancing in the street.
And as you can see, the horses are about to arrive. Children start at a very young age to become accustomed to being around the horses. I saw a grandpa up the road at various stages of training his grandson. First, at least the first time I saw them, the boy was not alone on the horse. Then one day, I saw the boy on the horse, but grandpa was in a truck, driving slowly and holding the reins beside the horse. Finally, the boy could ride alone.
I’ve seen a photo of my friend’s grandson – all of 4 years old – alone on an adult horse. Here, this little boy has a pint-sized one to ride on. Well, actually, it looks like he might be riding a burro.
And finally, the men and their horses arrive.
This cabalgata is very small compared to other towns, but we are a very small village. When I was stuck in the event in Comala, the horses were about 4 or 5 deep and you couldn’t see from one end of the line to the other end. Comala’s event was held during the day and it was like Times Square for New Year’s. You could barely move, there were so many people.
But I was happy that this was taking place in my village. I could walk a couple of blocks to attend, didn’t have to worry about where to park. And when I got tired, I could be home in 5 minutes. I guess with age, convenience means an awful lot.
So that wraps up the January 2018 Cabalgata de Cofradía de Suchitlán.
Adiós until next time.