Wednesday, November 01, 2006

11/1/06 (Day 50): Señor de los Milagros and the Plaza Mayor, Lima

Today was a day off. Our first day off since arriving in country nearly 7.5 weeks ago. It was wonderful. Seeing as last night was Halloween and Dia de la Cancion Criollo, our host mom let us sleep in a little. We rose, bathed, ate, and headed out. A quick combi ride down off the Sta. Eulalia hill to Chosica and a 24 sol (approx. $US7) taxi ride to the center of Lima, and we arrived into a sea of faithful worshipers. For today was the final day of celebration for Sr. de los Milagros. The basic and very brief version of the reason for reverence is that one day a long time ago there was an earthquake in Lima. The only thing to survive was a painting of this Señor... thereafter refered to as Sr. de los Milagros (miracles) and worshiped every October by Peruvians around the world. Celebratory activities include dressing in purple, eating mazamora morada (like purple gelatin) and arroz con leche (sweet milky rice with raisins & cinnamon), and having lots of parades. The photo below shows the original Sr. de los Milagros being trouped around the city by a hoarde of 36 strong men. It is made out of pure gold.

Here we are in the Plaza Mayor in front of the President's Palace.