with difficulty that we impressed upon him our necessity.
We told him that we wanted animals to carry us to
Papalo. In reply, he told us that Papalo was but
a poor town, and he outlined a journey the traveling
alone in which would occupy some eight or ten days.
When we assured him that we had no time for such an
enterprise, he said that it would be much better for
the towns to come to us in Cuicatlan. He proposed
sending to-morrow to those towns, and assured us that,
at the end of a week’s time, we would have all
the subjects we needed. So, when we suggested
that this, too, was loss of time, he had other brilliant
plans, all quite as useless. With the utmost
difficulty we finally succeeded in getting him to arrange
for animals to go to Papalo. From the very start,
the road was up-hill. Passing first through a
section covered with a magnificent growth of tree
cactuses of two species, in fine fruit and flower,
we found the vegetation varied as we mounted, and
at last came up among the pines. There was a
great variety of landscape and geological formation.
Purple-red conglomerate, with horizontal layers weathered
into massive forms; granitic schistose rocks, over
which we later passed, gave their peculiar scenic
outlines. We climbed steadily for fully four hours,
and then looked down, along a gently sloping hill trail,
to our town, perched upon a slightly lower hill.
Just at the edge of the town, we passed a gang of
men and boys at work, making a level platform for the
and town-house. We congratulated
ourselves that we should have no difficulty, here,
in finding subjects. The town claimed three thousand
population. Many of them were certainly away upon
their fields and ranches, scattered through the mountains,
and working fincas
for wealthy landowners.
The town itself is picturesque in the extreme.
Notable among its features is the ruined church, the
roof of which has fallen in; the walls still stand,
bare and broken, but the decorations, some richly
carved and gilded, are still unmoved within the demolished
edifice. The damage was recent, and represented
a double catastrophe—lightning and earthquake.
[Illustration: CACTUS; CUICATLAN]
We could not begin work until the mozo came
with the instruments. Finally, at four o’clock
in the afternoon, we began measuring with no great
difficulty. Before night, fifteen subjects had
passed through our hands and one bust had been made.
Even when we arrived, at midday, it was too cold for
us to stay with comfort in the town-house, though it
was hot enough outside in the sunshine. When night
came, it was bitter cold, and we went to bed early
in hope of keeping warm, a hope without foundation.
Early the next morning, we were ready for our work.
Every one had disappeared, except those whom we had
measured the night before. We requested the town
authorities to bring in subjects. A few stragglers
were dragged in and measured, and some pictures taken.