Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Happy Birthday, Suchitoto!

I shot straight out of bed at 6:00 this morning when the firecrackers began to go off. Someone's birthday, I thought, but when I saw the marching bands and the school kids lining up and the drum corps and the baton twirlers at work I asked Felix the electrician, who by this time was putting the final touches on the 220 volt line, what was up. It's Suchitoto's 151st anniversary, he said, and while I imagine the 150th may have been even grander, this anniversary was worth a few bomb blasts and a lot of dances.

And not all for fun: at 11 AM a big crowd of women and men assembled at the Centro Arte para la Paz to talk about the conditions for women in Suchitoto. One woman reported on a study of women in the municipality, which showed high levels of violence experienced by women and low levels of participation by women in the main decision-making bodies of the municipality. This led to a demand for gender equality in all areas of municipal life. Wonderful! I signed on.

Patti Moore and I left after a long talk by the Mayor, and drove out to Ilobasco, about an hour away. When we got back in the late afternoon, the plaza was full of dancers and the celebration was still going strong.

When we came back to the house we discovered that the stove was now working perfectly, but the refrigerator wasn't. So I'll be calling Felix again in the morning.

Happy birthday, Suchitoto!

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