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Sucre: the White City   1 | 2 

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Joseph and Mary Hire a Chauffer — The Epiphany parade in Sucre was one of the most enigmatic collection of activities I've ever seen revolving around a Catholic holiday. The procession is led by Joseph, Mary, and a plastic baby Jesus...on the back of a truck. Strangely, it's not even a Christler model. (Groan!)
Twenty Strollers Strolling — The puzzle continues with a dozen or two old women pushing decorated strollers containing plastic dolls and gifts, ranging from golden chalices to teddy bears.
Catholic Low Rider — Then come the cars so thoroughly covered with decoration, there's no way to see out the windshield. I don't know what the baby on the hood represents, but I can only assume it wasn't intended to look like a hit-and-run accident.
Gold, Frankincense, and Tootsie Rolls — Finally, the three "wise men" take up the rear, riding on horseback, and throwing handfuls of candy into the crowd. Immediately in front of us, groups of people hang onto each other as if for dear life while trying to pry their way through the crowd at top speed, positioning themselves closer to the good loot being thrown.
Passing Parade — Everybody else seems to have no problem making sense of this unusual combination of rituals. All we could think as we watched the enormous crowd pass us was, "Which of these people are supposed to be opening their restaurants so we can get some damn breakfast already?!"
Sunday Market — Although just about everybody in town was off chasing after the parade procession, at least there was still some work ethic at the central marketplace, an indoor arena three stories high and covering an entire square block. The produce section alone is bigger than in any grocery store I've been in.
Sunday Market — A family deliberates over a birthday cake for their daughter. They inevitably choose the simple and stately "Feliz Navidad Maria"...too bad her name is Gabriella.
Return of the Three Wise Men — Three wise men appear to be leading the way to church, but are actually pointing just beyond it to the K-Mart: "for all your frankincense and myrrh needs!"

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Last updated: 02 May 2002 22:08:27