The previous baktun (Mayan long count calendar) is over. A new one has begun. I've heard that the omens are good for this 2013, but that's largely up to us. So endeth the lesson.
Steve and I went back to Tucson for the long weekend. It was quite cold, which I enjoyed, of course. We got in Saturday night and went out for mesquite-grilled MEAT at a place called Lil' Abner's. It's in an old ranch building from the mid 19th century and the pit is located outside.
On Sunday, Dawn had to work so Karl, Steve and I went shooting in the morning then into Tucscon. We visited the Presidio for a bit, then heard drumming so we crossed the street to see what was up. A restaurant had twho Aztec dancers in very familiar costumes getting ready to do a performance. The one who was speaking was mixing up Mayan and Aztec and putting in mumbo jumbo about being barefoot in order to be in touch with Mother Earth, so we left. I found out from the lady in an arts and crafts store that the performers lived in Tijuana, so the reason they looked so familiar is because I've seen them in Tijuana many times!
After that we stopped by the shrine of El Tiradito. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Tiradito
I'd read about this shrine in books by James S. Griffith, who specializes in southern Arizona folklore, so I was very pleased to see it. In addition to the usual saint candles, there were a number of Louisiana voodoo offerings in the form of featureless dolls made of blue satin. After that, we swung by a botanica because it has a Santa Muerte mural, and Karl wanted a picture of himself with it. Karl is an old friend of Steve's from when they were both in high school, and they reconnected because of FaceBook about a year ago. We were astonished to discover that he was now an Asatru with a devotion to Santa Muerte!
We proceeded to St. Xavier del Bac, which is a mission church that has been in continual use since it was built. This is not the case with most, if any, California missions. It's also much more ornamented than any mission church I've seen here, and looks more Mexican than any church I've seen in the U.S. There's a tradition, also written about by Mr. Griffith, that an unfaithful spouse cannot lift the head of the statue of St. Xavier. The statue lies prone with its head on a pillow. I lifted its head but Steve seemed unimpressed.
Yesterday (New Year's Eve), Dawn had the day off so the four of us drove to Tombstone. It's always odd for me to go to a place that is that legendary because it's hard to believe it's real. But it is, and I'll resume the story tomorrow.