Thursday, January 24, 2008

Centro Historico Night Sounds

There were lots of night sounds that kept us company last night, and I'm sure for they will do so again each night we're here in Centro Historico. I found humor in the fiery, staccato police whistles each trying to outdo the other directing the masses of humanity and metal around cobbled corners during rush hour.

When rush hour was over there was the clanging of the metal grates that secure shop after shop of gold watches and bracelets. Each metal gate was secured with as many as 10 pad locks, the locking arm being at least 1/2 inch in diameter.

When night had fully fallen some indigenous people took up dancing in a circle on the corner. Maybe 20 of them dancing round and round and round to the steady beat of a drum that finally wore out about 10:00. That was when it was quiet enough to notice a rock band playing their hearts out on a huge stage miked into mega speakers.

All of these events were under the steady eye of literally 150 gendarmes. This being government center and the site of gatherings and demonstrations, if something is going to get out of hand, I guess this will be where it will be.

When all the dancers and musicians had gone home, the thunder started clapping, someone or something in the hotel started jackhammering, and the cathedral bells kept time.

Through it all I mostly slept.

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