Most mornings, I got up early and went out to explore the town with my camera for an hour or so before breakfast, sometimes alone, sometimes with one or two of my fellow artists. Bonnie took this picture of me taking a photo one morning as she and I made our way down one street (it was a slow process, we stopped every couple of feet to take yet another photo!):
I liked going out at this time of day, the light was good for taking pictures and it was a chance to see parts of the town before things got too crowded (the closer it got to the Dead of the Dead, the busier the city became as tourists and locals alike came out to join in the celebrations). There was just so much to see!
It was also how I discovered why there wasn't much debris for me to pick up on the streets during the day to add to my art journal. It's because people like these ladies were hired to clean the streets with their straw brooms early in the morning before most of the tourists were out and about.
It was also a chance to see the children being taken to school. There were two schools in our immediate area and classes began at 8 a.m. The streets nearby were busy with families walking together or cars dropping off kids.
Being out and about at that time of day, I also saw this woman setting up on the street to serve hot food to passersby. I think it's the Mexican equivalent of stopping at Starbucks or Tim Hortons for a morning coffee and a breakfast sandwich.
These ladies were selling bread in the shape of little people but I think that was part of the holiday tradition surrounding the Day of the Dead festivities.
Deliveries were made while it was still early enough that a parked truck wouldn't clog the street.
Fresh food was dropped off to local restaurants or picked up from bakeries.
One morning, I had stopped in a little park in front of a local church to watch a pigeon having a bath in a fountain.
I noticed a father and son sit down on a park bench near me so the father could do up the child's shoes. While the father had his head down, the boy was watching the same pigeon I was. He laughed and laughed, while the father remained oblivious to the pigeon's antics (they weren't even shoelaces, they were velcro!) I kept taking pictures of the pigeon and snapped a few of the boy laughing.
It was a shared moment of simple pleasure for both of us.
I'll bet he would have laughed even harder if he'd known one of those pigeons had pooped on my head one early morning just a few days before! ;)