Monday, November 3, 2008

Dia de los Muertos, San Francisco, 2008

A new year, a new city, a new experience. The pictures fail to show what last night was about. A procession began after speeches about peace, community and Obama. It snaked through the Mission, past near where the shootings happened two months ago, through residential neighborhoods, around corner stores, down Mission Street and then back to Garfield Park. All sorts of people, little kids, old folks and everyone between, all dancing in the streets. In the park, my friend Rio was one of many who had set up a participatory altar. There was music all night, shadow puppets, amazing costumes, warm-colored candlelight everywhere.

I biked by Garfield Park this morning on my way to work to see the aftermath-- there was nothing. All the altars dismantled, the grass impeccable, the streets totally quiet. It almost seemed like it might not have happened, which is pretty incredible and cathartic and part of the point. It's time to go back to school/work/life/dreaming/hurting/hoping/dying. I'm left feeling great about all of these things. I want to learn how to play a snare drum so I can hit it in parades. Next year, next year.

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