Oaxacan Social Fabric

A long day of travel day found us all well in Oaxaca. Our group hung together during the trip sharing our delight at this opportunity to study Spanish and learn about Oaxacan culture.

Arriving late at my home stay, my first goal was to take comfort and prepare for the days ahead. My home stay is in a comfortable home hosted by sweet Bertha and her family. I rested looking forward to the promises of tomorrow — my first opportunity to truly experience Oaxaca and explore its charms.

The first morning I was awakened by repetitive beats of thunder. No, too fast. Gunfire? No, safe to ignore the concerns expressed by media. Fireworks? Yes, celebrations perhaps for the ongoing elections. The boom of fireworks quickly subsided, replaced by the morning chatter of birds busy socializing this Sunday morning.

Later this first morning in Oaxaca it was enheartening to see my host family set off to vote in their presidential elections. Voting here seems to be important and part of the social fabric with my family joined in this election outing by their extended family and children. (Later I did learn more about why presidential elections are an important and sensitive matter in Oaxaca.)

In Oregon we benefit from the ease of voting by mail but I do miss and think we lose some of our social fabric by not having walk-in elections giving us a chance to connect with our neighbors.