Ojo: The "Cholo Word Of The Day" is simply for fun. This is not an academic exercise, therefore I do not spend much time checking for espelling or grammatical errors. Most of the words are not only used by "cholos," but by many people in S. Texas - and their usage can vary. c/s

Monday, July 04, 2005

El Dia De La Virgen Del Refugio

Es el dia cuatro de Julio, the fourth of July. This morning people from the neighboring towns of El Refugio, Queretaro, wake up before three a.m. to make the trek to pay homage to the Virgen del Refugio. La Fiesta Patria del Refugio has been going on for a week now.

Eight years ago today, my grandfather Manuel Hernandez, said goodbye to this world. Today, the altar is there for him, and my grandmother is once again wrapping up the novenario. The man leading the rosario would kneel in front of the Virgen holding his sombrero in one hand and the rosary in the other and begin to pray. Ave Maria Purismima....Padre Nuestro..Sin Pecado Consevida...Amen...

El Rosario

Today the novenario ends and I sit in a cubicle at my law school studying for the week I am about to encounter and I think about my abuelito. I think about how strong of a man he was. Then I think about how my parents are also getting older and how important family is. Irasali captured it perfectly when she talked about her grandmother.

My grandfather was a strong man. People came to him for advice and he never turned a hungry soul away, even if he too was hungry. I wrote this while I was still in Dallas:

This summer I visited the tiny Mexican pueblo of El Refugio where fences are made of stone, dirt roads are the only roads, and water is stored in wells, for my grandfather’s novenario. The nine day traditional Catholic tribute to the dead brought together old men and women, middle aged couples and the occasional child to my grandmother’s two-room adobe home. The day before my visit to El Refugio I had been sitting in a cushy chair in my air-conditioned downtown Dallas office. Now in El Refugio I stood next to the faithful while they prayed and I mouthed prayers I did not know. People paid their respects to a man who had done so much for them. He was not formally educated, but still represented neighbors when they had issues with local police, politicians, and municipalities; all of whom respected him. I have always been inspired by my grandfather’s story, leaving his young family to work in Mexico’s northern states and the United States as a bracero, but this day I was visiting his home wanting to take with me some of his courage, enthusiasm, and will to serve the people,...

Tonight the bells will toll. It's called El Doble. My grandmother, my mom, some tios, and other older people will be praying inside my abuelitas house and the church bells will toll letting El Refugio know that today we remember a great man. Some people will make the sign of the cross while they are walking to the corner store, cooking dinner, or sitting and chatting. The people inside my grandmother's house will get a chill down their spine and remember.

For more pictures go here.


Blogger Cracked Chancla said...

"I mouthed prayers I did not know..." i can totally relate, I could never remember my prayers.

lighting a white candle for the dearly departed always makes me feel better. maybe you can do it for you grandfather. thank you for sharing.

5:09 PM

Blogger HispanicPundit said...

Great post bro, making me want to call my abuelita.

9:33 PM

Blogger mariposatomica said...

This is such a beautiful blog post. Your abuelito sounds like he was an amazing individual. I'm sure you will follow in the same foot steps.

10:09 AM

Blogger Jairo said...

No sabes cuanto me recuerdan a mi querido rancho esas fotos que tienes. Las calles, la gente, las casas, hasta el panteon se parece!

Muy chido carnal. Sigue escribiendo, que escribes muy bien.

Un saludo desde la ciudad de Houston Tejas.


6:54 AM

Anonymous Martinez said...

Hey what going on, just stumbled on to this web site and belive it or not my parents are from El Refugio too we have family there also and i try to visit as much as i can. I like what your doing here great site and keep it up......

2:00 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

belive it or not i am from mi querido el refugio and i am proud of my little ranchito i went to school with juan lopez hdz wich i belive is your cousin, i know all your family and i want to say tanks because all this makes me remenber a lot.

6:12 PM

Anonymous Maria L. Garcia-Garza said...

My grandmother is from El Refugio she left at very young age I beleive she was 16 when she left. She has gone back maybe 3 or 4 times. I would like to take her back I guess it would be her last time to the small town she was born and grew up in. She getting up in age and I think she will enjoy one last trip. How would I get there what is the quickest and safe route to take I live in Austin

9:04 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

La borrega esta llorando por su ranchito querido La coneja lo consuela diciendole que pronto lo llebara.
el se calma de llorar un poco pero a la coneja le entra la nostalgia y empieza a llorar con la borrega entonce biene el cuerbo a consolarlos

3:27 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

A todos essas personas con acceso al internet y que sean del my querido e inolvidable ranchito de el Refugio Queretaro, les mando un saludo. Yo soy la famosa borrega ( Refugio R), y estoy con mi mi amigo la coneja ( Berna Ramos) hijo del casique del pueblo.
don Jiman.
Hasta pronto. Alla los esperamos el proximo 4 the julio.

3:33 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Un saludo para el delegado y los policias del Refugio; que lo echaron a la carcel, que se cuiden mucho porque pronto se ban a ver alla

De parte de la Coneja y el T.bone

3:41 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Diganle a la coneja q por internet todo se sabe....que no sea mensoooooo!

5:43 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

habla la mera mera.....ya tu sabes...

5:46 PM


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