My days in Zacatecas are spent sitting at a desk:Â writing, adjusting with photoshop, playing solitare while listening to audio books or reading.Â Usually at noon I wander to the market for food, but other than that, there is no exercise.Â Finding myself a little soft in the middle, I try to walk daily up the hill behind my house.
And today, you, my dear readers, get to come along.
In the beginning… there is a view looking west from my deck, to the back of the Central Cathedral.
Included in this photograph, as an added bonus, is an image of my classically designed patio furniture.
Still on my deck, looking right, or north, is the hill to climb.Â Arranged on the top of the hill, from left to right, is the cable car building.Â The meteorological tower with the red roof, and the bell tower of the church.
Left out my front door, up the alleyway.
Left at the top of the alleyway, with another view of the hill, and an immediate right past the red car.
Up the street, where the typical electrical and phone lines crisscross the sky.
A pretty house, with a subtle mohawk.
More uphill street.
Church dedicated to the children by the side of the road.
The hill I am climbing is called La Bufa.Â The origin of the word bufa is not known, but there are three ideas:Â from the Basque word meaning ‘pigs bladder’, from the Italian buffa, a knights hood or shoulder acceessory, or a mining term for a type of rock.
During my many uphill climbs, I was intrigued by the number and size of crosses along the pathway.Â But one day, while resting and wheezing from the 8,000 foot altitude, I noticed a Roman Numeral displayed on a cross.Â With investigation I noticed each cross had a number.Â They went from 1 to 13.Â They could only represent the Stations of the Cross.Â Where each number represents part of Jesus’s journey to crucifiction.
This picture is cross number one.
Close-up of number two.
Number two from across the street.
Random cross atop a house.
The real guardian of the internet.Â No need for anti-virus software any more.
Hot Dogs and Pepsi.Â Welcome to Mexico!
Once the houses end; the path steepens and widens.Â Cross number five is on the immediate right, while number six is next to the tiny bicyclist pushing up the hill.
Graffiti by cross number six.
The winding pathway with cross number seven.
The pathway with cross number eight on the right, and number ten in the distance.Â The distant rock outcrop is the top of La Bufa hill.Â It seems reasonable that someone might name that thin peaked rock after a knights helmet, or plumage.Â But then again, I’ve been wrong before.
Cross number eight in the morning sun.
Detail number nine.
Detail number nine, with decaying flowered offerings.
Cross number nine on right, number eight on left, and The Zacatecas Aqueduct standing above the town in the distance.
Cross number ten from the back.
And over its left shoulder, looking southeast.
Cross number 11 with La Bufa behind.
Cross number twelve.Â Art!
Cross number twelve with arched walkway in background.
Number 13 with La Bufa in the background again.Â I never did find a cross numbered fourteen, but I assume the church nearby, where all these crosses were leading, was number fourteen.
So a picture of number thirteen again, with shadow.
View from the cable car building.Â Looking down on Zacatecas.Â In the center is the two bell towers and dome of Central Cathedral.Â On its right is a square where they sometimes have dangling musicians.Â And two blocks to the cathedral’s left, my (impossible to see) balcony.
A watching owl on the path to the meteorological tower.
A view of most of Zacatecas from the meteorological tower.
Be patient opening this picture, it’s a large panorama.Â
On the far right of the panorama, is the high desert leading to the north.Â Just like the treasure of the Sierra Madre.Â It’s a good movie, go see it.
Bottom middle is the red roofed cable car building, with a red cable car just visible above the roof line.Â On a line from the building, through the cable car, is a darkened arch, which is the other end of the cable car.Â To its left is a gray building, one of the entrances to the La MIne el Eden, and its underground disco.
Middle left, is again, the Central Cathedral.
And on the far left bottom, in the greenery, is the station of the cross path up the hill.
(Useless trivia:Â After silver was found on Sept 8, 1546, Zacatecas soon became the second largest city in Mexico, behind Mexico City itself.)
Below is a picture (taken from the rocks of La Bufa) of Revolution Square.Â This hill has been the scene of three battles; the Independence War, the Reform War, and in 1914 Poncho Villa’s Revolution War.Â The three statues in the square represent the three generals who fought and climbed up the side of the hill in 1914.Â Because to win this hill, is to win the city.
In the foreground, General Felipe Angeles.
Pancho Villa riding hard, with rifle ahigh leading troops forward.
General Panfilo Natera.
Shadow stretched down the steps of Revolution Square.Â With the gateway into the court yard of El Patrocinio Sanctuary.Â Built in 1728.
Front entrance to the courtyard of El Patrocinio Sanctuary.
The courtyard and church of El Patrocinio Sanctuary.
Jesus and child behind glass reflecting the courtyard and church.
Plaster priest behind glass, with dog.
Courtyard columns and church.
Stone work in the courtyard.
Inside the church.
Altar inside church.
Bloody Jesus beside entryway inside church.
View back out of church, toward gate and La Bufa.
Looking heavenward up stone wall, with rain spout and sky.
Arches looking southeast over hills and station of the cross pathway.
In the deepening darkness, on my way down the hill, the eyes of a coyote (fox?) reflect my camera flash.
Down to another quiet night, with my book.