If we were playing jeopardy, the correct response to the title of this blog post would be “what do you find in every plaza in Querétaro”?
Remember a couple of posts ago, how excited I was about those green patches I saw on my Google map? Well, turns out, this place is even better than I ever expected. There are plazas aplenty here! Far more than what appeared on the map. These squares are truly the hearts of the community–beautiful public spaces, with statues, fountains, vendors, music and happy people. There is a whole lot of living going on in this town, much of it taking place in these wonderful plazas.
Here is a brief tour of just a few of Querétaro’s plazas. If you want to see more, you may just have to come here yourself.
This cool sculpture represents an Otomi warrior. The Otomi were living in Querétaro when the Spanish arrived.
I had expected The Plaza de las Armas to have a military theme. Instead of cannons and guns, however, this beautiful fountain dominates the square. I’ve seen lots of creative ways to get water gushing forth, but this is the first time I’ve ever seen it coming from dogs’ mouths.
You don’t have to walk very far in this town to stumble upon a church. The interiors are much the same–crucifixes and lots of gold, but I found the exteriors rather compelling.
I particularly like the Templo of Santa Cruz. (I have no idea why they are called ‘templos’ here instead of iglesias. Maybe that terminology is particular to Mexico?) Anyway, this Templo has it all–fountains, a convent,
a statue representing the indigenous population the missionaries were sent to “save”,
and a replica of the stone cross that the Spanish and the locals saw in the sky on July 26,1531, during “the battle for domination”.
According to legend, that day, there was a total eclipse of the sun, followed by the appearance St. James, riding a white horse across the sky and carrying such a cross, (sans serape, I would expect). The legend states that this celestial event frightened the Otomi and their allies, resulting in a Spanish victory.
Okay, so enough of the history. On to the party dresses. They are EVERYWHERE.
Which reminds me. Time to go shopping!