Last night´s Grito lived up to its reputation. Downtown was packed with thousands of people, so I stayed home and watched El Grito on television. At about 11:00 p.m., President Fox and the First Lady walked thrue the Presidential Palace. As they approached the balcony, they parted and the President approached an honor guard caring the flag. They shared salutes, and the honor guard handed the President the Mexican Flag. He marched it out onto the balconey to the screams of the revelers standing below in the Zocalo. Then he shouted, I mean shouted,
“!Viva Mexico!”, several times. The crowd answered each scream. It was a thrill to watch a country gather despite social, economic, and cultural differences, and celebrate their country with unity and passion. These have been a couple days of unabashed patriotism.
Today, the actual independence day, was a day of parades. We walked downtown to watch Durango´s Independence Day parade. It was beautiful. I think every school in town was represented, as were local and national security forces, and the fire departments. I had the distinct pleasure to approach a few military officers and thank them for the support they lent us in the Hurrican Katrina relief effort. Two officers told me they actually went to New Orleans, and just returned to take part in the independence day activities. They told me it was their pleasure to serve their neighbors. It was a pleasure for me to have the opportunity to thank them personally.
Talea was thrilled by the pomp and circumstance. She really enjoyed the marching bands, and marched right along with them. At one point we managed to watch from a second-story balconey. Talea was anxious of the possibility of mascots (her mascot-phobia continues), but the armed military men didn´t phase her. Once the last of the parade went by, everyone seemed to melt off the streets, and things became real quiet. We went shopping, North American style.
Ingrid is doing well. She´s got her own blog, as well. She is making friends right and left. I find that she is making an incredible effort to maintain conversations in Spanish, even if she is speaking to a bilingual. Tenacious woman, that Inky. Today she made friends with the lady across the street. She owns a combination coffee shop/chiroprater (sp?) office. She can make you a cup of coffee and give you a back massage in the same place! Get this, she lived in Holland (the Europe Holland, like the Netherlands Holland, not the Michigan, Holland) for four years. Ink spent the afternoon figuring out who they were related two, were friends with, or might have know each other if so-and-so… Anyway, its a Small Inky World, isn´t it?
I am enjoying my day off. After three weeks without my posse, I could spend the day just staring at them. Actually, Talea told me to quit staring at her. She can´t fool me, though. Every once in awhile she just hugs me for no reason. Heaven on Earth.