Reaching Cuaquitepec at five, we rode up to the town-house, that the authorities might know that we had passed. The place is small and dwindling; there are relatively many ladinos, and few indians. They were expecting us, and seemed disappointed at our refusal to stop. The shell of the old church, almost ready to fall, suggested past magnificence. The little modern structure, at its side, is suited to the present needs. We were vexed at the wanton sacrifice of a great tree, which had stood near the town-house, but whose giant trunk was prostrate, and stripped of its branches. A man on foot showed us the road beyond the town, and it was moonlight before we reached Citala, where we planned to sleep. Of the town itself, we know nothing. The old church is decaying, but in its best days must have been magnificent. The presidente was absent, but his wife, an active, bustling intelligent ladino, expected us, and did everything possible for our comfort. Eggs, beans, tortillas and coffee made up the supper. A room, containing a bed for me, and petates on the floor for my companions, was waiting. When a light was struck more than a dozen great cockroaches were seen running over the wall, none of them less than two inches and a half in length, and of the most brilliant orange and dark brown. In the morning, a fine chicken breakfast was promptly ready, and the woman had summoned a cargador to be ready for our starting. She said that in this town there is a considerable indian population, and that these Tzendals are tall and strongly-built, in comparison with those of Cuaquitepec, and other neighboring towns. She regretted that we could not wait until her husband came, as she had sent him word of our arrival, and was expecting him. We assured her that she had done everything which he could possibly have done, had he been present, and that we should, with pleasure, report our satisfaction to the jefe.
[Illustration: INDIAN CARRIERS RESTING]
[Illustration: DRIVING PIGS, NEAR CANCUC]
The cargador whom she supplied, was a comfort, after the wretched sluggards whom we had lately had. With our instruments upon his shoulders, he trotted, like a faithful dog, directly at our side, from start to finish, never showing the least weariness or sense of burden. Both foot mozos and arrieros through this district carry a mass of posole with them on a journey. Unlike that which Eustasio and his Zapotec companions carried, the mass here is pure corn, white and moist, being kept wrapped in fresh banana leaves; at every brook-side, a jicara of fresh water is dipped, and a handful of posole is squeezed up in it till thoroughly mixed, when it is drunk. It tastes a little sour, and is refreshing. At 11:15, we passed the bridge over the stream on which Chilon is built, and a moment later drew up at the town-house. Here we regretted that our serious