Guadalajara: Street Musicians

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A trumpeter and drummer prepare to move down the street.


A trumpet! A drum!
I can tell by the loudness of the music that whoever is playing is not far from my apartment, but by the time I tie my shoes, go downstairs, and unlock and lock the front gate, the joyful strains have ceased.
Disconsolately I ascend the stairs to my apartment, fit the key in the lock, and resume my interrupted chores.
Perhaps twenty minutes later, I hear the lively music again. This time it is very close. I peer over the edge of my second-story terrace, and there in the street below me are an old man with a battered trumpet, and a young man with a small red drum. The two of them sound like a whole mariachi band!
I barely have time to aim my mobile phone at them for a quick shot as they pick up their belongings (the old man lugs a bulging black plastic garbage bag, and the young man guides a pink scooter) and move down the street. Apparently, they are circling the neighborhood, hoping to garner donations in these waning hours of the year.
Maybe they’ll use the few pesos they get to throw themselves a New Year’s Eve party. Or maybe they have families to support, and busking is their sole source of income.
Whatever the case, I’m grateful to them for a few moments of joy in an otherwise mundane morning. Feliz Año Nuevo!

almost New Year’s Eve—
the neighbor’s poinsettias
redder than before


Text and photo © 2016 by Mark M. Redfearn, all rights reserved


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