In Indian Mexico (1908) eBook

Frederick Starr
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 481 pages of information about In Indian Mexico (1908).
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 new plaza 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. 

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In Indian Mexico (1908) from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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