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).
bottom, but then found ourselves in deeper water, and were again upon the Gulf.  The Mexico was just as dirty, the food was just as bad, and the crew just as unaccommodating, as in 1896, when we had our first experience of her.  Rather than lie in the stuffy cabin, I took my blanket out on deck, and rolled up there for the night.  Room was plenty, as there were only a score of passengers.  When we woke, the boat was standing in the harbor of Coatzacoalcos, and we landed to eat a breakfast at the hotel.  Through the day, we wandered about town, but were again upon the vessel at four o’clock.  We now numbered about a hundred passengers, and everything was crowded.  In the company was a comic theatre troupe.  The day before, a number of the passengers had been seasick; on this occasion, three-fourths were suffering, and the decks were a disgusting spectacle.  Still, fresh air was there, and again I made my bed on deck.  In the middle of the night, having moved slightly, I felt a sharp and sudden pain in my right temple, exactly as if I had rolled upon a sharp, hot tack.  I had my jacket for a pillow, and thought at first that there really was a tack in one of the pockets, and sought, but in vain, to find it.  Lying down to sleep again, I presently moved my hand over the blanket on the deck, and suddenly, again, I felt the sharp, burning prick, this time in my thumb.  Certain that it could not be a tack this time, I brought my hand down forcibly, and, rising, saw by the moonlight that I had killed a large, black scorpion.  For two hours the stings felt like fire, but by morning had ceased to pain me; then I found two or three of the other passengers suffering from similar stings, and reached the conclusion that the Mexico was swarming with the creatures.  At dawn, we sighted Vera Cruz, and were soon in the harbor, standing at anchor; at eight o’clock, we stood upon the wharf, and our journeys in Indian Mexico were ended.

[Illustration:  INDIAN HUT; SANTA ANITA]

[Illustration:  GUADALUPE; DECEMBER 12]



But it was not necessary to go to distant Oaxaca and Chiapas to find Mexican indians.  On the border of the capital city lie Santa Anita, Iztacalco, Mexicalcingo, Ixtapalapa, and a quantity of other villages and towns, where one may still find Aztec indians of pure blood, sometimes speaking the old language, sometimes wearing characteristic dress, and maintaining, to the present, many ancient practices and customs.  At Santa Anita, for example, one may eat juiles and tamales, catch a glimpse of indian weddings, and delight his eyes with the fresh beauty of the chinampas,—­wonderful spots of verdure and flowers—­the floating gardens of the ancient Aztecs.  Half an hour, or less, in the tram-car takes the traveller to Guadalupe, which may be called the heart of Indian Mexico.  There,

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