The World Championship Chili Cook Off is taking place a few miles from here, the Celebration of the “Day of the Dead” was also taking place last night around the corner, my friend Brian took a quick run from Louisiana spending a couple nights here, more riders from the Texas Two Wheel forum are somewhere around here zig zagging the roads and eating many miles on their limited schedule… Spirit is tagging along probably wondering when all this excitement is going to stop… and at the same time as I am, taking it all in!
We took a quick ride to the Cook Off’s in the late morning, after another great breakfast at Kathy’s Kosmic Kowgirl Kaffee, stirring up the morning fire and catching up with the latest news. Nothing too exciting happening on the grounds, the big day is today and will probably take another ride there in a couple hours. We might even witness the “coronation” of the winner… Like every outdoor gathering some odd vehicles where present… interesting.
We did afterwards bump into the Texas Two Wheel riders at the local gas station, they were on their way to Presidio, today it is Ft Davis for them and hopefully might join them tonight at their campsite at the Rio Campground or, where else but at Kathy’s, Sunday morning for Breakfast before their departure from this area.
But the highlight of the day was the Celebration of the “Day of the Dead”, a celebration that started last weekend with the Chisos Mining Family members reunion, “Viva La Historia”, with about 400 members. The celebration is a Mexican Holiday, when families pray for the soul of the departed, honoring them by erecting small altars.
Small offerings, “offrendas”, are placed, flowers, food, coins, pictures. It seems as nightfall made its way, that the whole town of Terlingua was present. Many brought food for all, as they did last weekend. Most helped out with the lighting of the candles to be placed on the gravesites, about 400 of them. 200 of those gravesites are still unidentified, some lost and covered in the brushes, some without a stone, sometimes a simple cross on the ground.
But they all received the Celebration. According to the tradition, this day is not meant to be ghoulish or scary, the day is suppose to be fun and funny, the idea being to welcome the spirits with what they have missed over the past year with familiar food, bright colors, songs and laughter. Neither death nor the dead need to be feared but understood as a cycle of Life. It is a borrowed Mexican holiday, it is an interesting concept, different for me, there was music, a quiet crowd throughout the night, there was respect and a feeling floating amongst us unlike other days.
By Monday this area will go back to its normal every day state of mind! And then again the “tourist” season is starting as the weather has been but perfect throughout these last days. We still have ourselves so many roads to ride… so many places to go… The decision to come and stay here for a while, whatever this “while” will be, has proven to be a wise one, to say the least.
You be well, hope you enjoy the pictures, I feel that they are worth a thousand words today…
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853 Vanderbilt Beach Rd #245
Naples, Florida 34108
Ara & Spirit