Lent is a very special time to visit Teotitlán del Valle in Oaxaca, Mexico. Go very early in the morning to the cathedral in the center of town and you'll see a group of elders preparing for the day. Flowers will be inside the dark, yet ornately decorated cathedral. The musicians will be practicing. And people from the town will be laying flower petals in the plaza and on the streets.
The procession, a mix of Catholic and pre-Hispanic traditions, starts early in the morning and wanders through the cobblestone streets. The musicians play a welcoming tune, and people peak out their front doors to see the passersby.
The rose petals signal to the procession where they need to stop and pray, and the music changes its tune. The procession ends just as the market in the plaza starts to get busy. It all takes your spirit to another time and another place where the way of life is both proudly historic and comfortable.