Our tour did pick us up on time this AM and we headed out to the sanctuary.Our driver was excellent but with very limited English. I hadn’t quite realized that it was a 3 hour drive from Morelia, but it was an interesting drive, once out of the city the country side reminded me of the area in California where I grew up. It could have been the old highway between Vallejo and Fairfield, with the brown rolling hills sand sparse tree.We went thru tiny towns, bigger towns, most built right to the road. There was the basket town with every imaginable type of canasta (basket) available, and the next town was the pan( bread) town..
We came across some interesting vehicles on the road such as the truck carrying a huge load of recycled plastic bottles, and in front of him a log truck with the logs loaded sideways. Soon we were headed up the mountain and th road got steep and then it became a partially cobble stone with brick pavers as runners. You sure knew it when you crossed into the cobblestones. At last we are at the sanctuary, we locate our guide who speaks almost no english, and locate our horses. With an altitude of 10,00 plus feet and the Senor and I both having knee issues, we knew we weren’t up for the climb. And the path is quite steep in some places. Well I provided great amusement for all hauling my self up on this horse from. Even starting by standing on a chair it still took 3 people to push, shove and pull to get me on. And to think I once was fairly graceful! The horses were led, so all we had to do was sit back and hold on for dear life. Actually it was quite fun. As we neared the pine trees were the butterflies are we dismounted and walked the rest of the way. At first it was quite disappointing as it was cloudy and the butterflies don’t fly without the sun shine, We could see them in the trees so thick the branches drooped, looked like solid gold on some trees.
But the clouds gave way, the sun came through and the butterflies began to fly, butterflies were everywhere, but like birds they rarely
hold still for pictures. We took tons of pictures, the Senor’s aim is better than mine, but my hand is steadier, between us we got enough pictures to prove we were there.When we returned to our starting point our guide took us t
o a place for lunch. We watched as this ancient lady hand make the best tortillas and fill it with cheese for my lunch while the Senor had Chicken in a pot. Very enjoyable meal. We were both ready to return to Morelia for good nights sleep. We decided just snacks in our room would suit us just fine.But then I remembered that I hadn’t attempted to photograph the beautiful cathedral at night So the Senor snuggled down to watch some TV and I headed to the cathedral.
I got several shots and decided I would go inside for one last look around. Quite a few folks were there so I took a seat and kneeled down and suddenly the whole cathedral reverberated with the priest’s booming voice beginning the mass. I was mesmerized! I hadn’t been to mass in more years than I care to remember, but it was such a beautiful place, with beautiful sounds and I even greeted and shook hands with all my Mexican neighbors. Following the communion the folks who brough their dolls and statues were asked to come forward and have them blessed as it is Candlemas Day, which of course I had completely forgotten, but of course I knew it was ground hogs day. A lovely end to a wonderful day. Signing off KO