On The Road, Again: Leaving Oaxaca, Hello North Carolina, California and India

If I had Willie Nelson’s voice and guitar picking skills, I’d give you a personal performance. But, my elementary school glee club (mandatory) teacher asked me to mouth the words. You might like to hear him sing, once again.

Willie Sings: On The Road Again

I left Oaxaca early this morning and now overnight in my Mexico City hotel. Tomorrow morning I take off for North Carolina to vote. Yes, VOTE! I’m doing this in person because I want my vote to count this year. I have to do a legal voter registration name change in person before I can do early voting. This is really important because NC is a swing state. My vote matters.

See who I’m voting for!   As if you couldn’t guess. Smile.

There’s also Colie and Brad’s wedding this weekend. She’s my dear friend Hollie’s daughter and I wouldn’t miss it for the world. I also get time with all my great NC pals Kathryn, Hettie, Karen and Steve, Cindy, Chris, Kate, Helen, Anne, Jo-Ann and Ted, Debbie, Judith, Robin, Kaola, Lew and Olive, and so many more …… Can’t wait.

The children's comparsa, Muertos

The children’s comparsa, Dia de los Muertos, Oaxaca

Next, I go to California to visit my son, and then our family gathers to lay the headstone on our mother’s grave in Santa Cruz. This will mark the first anniversary of her death on November 15, and in our religious tradition there is an important ceremony of remembrance.

The Old Cemetery, Xoxocotlan--Day of the Dead

The Old Cemetery, Xoxocotlan–Day of the Dead

My plan is to build a Day of the Dead — Dia de los Muertos Altar in North Carolina to remember my parents. I have the copal incense and photos packed in my luggage.

Muertos altar, November 2, 2015, remembering my dad

Muertos altar, November 2, 2015, remembering my dad

On November 15, I fly to New Delhi, India, where I’ll meet up with Fay Sims from Vancouver, B.C., Canada. Oaxaca has given me many blessings. I met Fay in Oaxaca and we have traveled to Chiapas together, so we figured we would make good travel partners for India. We’ll be there for a month, focusing on the textile culture of Gujarat, including block printing with indigo dyes.

Example, Gujarat Block Print with Indigo

My first cousin Sharon and my aunt, my mother’s younger sister now age 98, also live in Delhi, and I’m excited to see them again after a many year lapse.

I plan to blog, photograph and write about Indian and Oaxacan textiles from a comparative point-of-view.

When I return to Los Angeles, my son and I will fly together back to Oaxaca just in time for Christmas.

You’ll hear from me intermittently over the next few weeks as I settle into living out of a suitcase once again.

Participate in the Dia de los Muertos–Day of the Dead 5-Day Photo Challenge at Mexico Travel Photography.

22 responses to “On The Road, Again: Leaving Oaxaca, Hello North Carolina, California and India

  1. Norma,
    Any chance that we might see you, if only briefly, when you are in California?
    Bob and I leave for Antartica on November 16th.

    • Margie, you are such a dear! I arrive in Santa Cruz on the 8th. Our moms unveiling is the 14th and I leave for India on the 15th. I don’t have a plan to get to San Francisco on this trip. I’m sorry but I don’t think either of us will have enough time to get together as much as I would love to see you! Let’s hope for another opportunity soon.
      Love to you and Bob. And have a wonderful trip.

  2. Hi Norma – have a wonderful trip. I have heard the textiles in India
    are out of this world.

    Adios, Susanne

  3. Thank you for making the great effort to vote in this election!

  4. Norma,
    If you have a chance to see the book “Indigo” by Catherine Legrand (Editions de La Martinière), you will be more than curious and happy to go to India. You won’t carry the book (too heavy). Fantastic pictures of indigo! Even if you don’t read French, the pictures are worth it.
    Have a great voyage! Longing to read your notes.

    • Great reference, Madeleine. Thank you for suggesting. I will look it up. Maybe order it, read it and leave it in California. I ordered the book written by the India textile curator of the Victoria & Albert Museum. Can’t wait to see the textiles!

  5. I’m a long time fan of Oaxaca, having traveled there many times in the past 4 decades, and like you, I have a tremendous fondness for the place and people, not to mention their textiles and art forms. Your posts keep me informed of one of my favorites places, and urge me to return.

    Reading your impressions and perspective of India will be fascinating. Your lifestyle is inspiring! Vaya con Dios, Norma!

    • With deepest thanks, Dennys, for reading and following! I hope to see you one day soon in Oaxaca. Sometimes, though, my “lifestyle” gets ahead of me and all I want to do is stay put for a while. But, time is clicking and I seem to want to move around the world in search of beautiful cloth while I can. All best, Norma

  6. Dear Norma,

    Have safe and wonderful,travels.
    Jo Ann and Tom

  7. Have a wonderful and safe journey.

  8. Have a great trip, Norma! I’m excited to hear about your travels in India. I hope to visit one day, but my only friend interested in visiting India is not a textile maven, so I’ll have to learn enough from afar to be selective!! (You could be just the resource I need!)
    We scattered my parents ashes in SF Bay out-going tide last month, so I too will be making my first Day of the Dead alter for both parents this year. Good thing I have the necessary items from our trip to Oaxaca last year!
    Safe travels and bravo for voting. ( I’m glad this native CA votes in CO.)

    • We carry their memories with us in our hearts. I’ve been scanning photos today and I miss our mother. And, life continues and we are part of the continuum. Aren’t we lucky to be here for as long as life is given to us. A gift. Thank you for reading and for your support. San Francisco Bay is the perfect place for retaining the spirit of loved ones. Abrazos, Norma

  9. ive enjoyed your posts since i first discovered them about a year ago. though some of your travel groups/classes are out of my budget range :), the photos and reports have opened up new areas for me to investigate and experience. ive recently added the sierre norte area in puebla to my must visit areas this winter in part based on your posts….want my 17 year old grandson who will be with me for a portion of my travels to get a real sense of indigenous life.
    but none of that is my real purpose in writing to you. i just wanted to say how impressed i am at your effort to get “home” to vote. with so much at sake and north carolina such a crucial wing state, your vote does truly matter and your willingness to make the journey is a fine thing.

    • Thank you, Dale! I’m now in NC and my plan is to get to the Voter Registration office in my county of residence to make sure all is in place for me to vote early! At the top of the list for why I’m here! Appreciate that you found my blog and it is helpful to you!

  10. What a wonderful itinerary! I look forward to your wonderful photos as you share your adventures.

  11. Norma

    If you end up near Asheville let me know. I’d love for you to stop by.

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