May 10, 2012
A cacophony of sound projects across the dusty streets of Comitancillo. Roosters crow in the early morning. Harsh diesel engines send vibrations that shake the walls of our street-side home. Reggaeton music plays loudly from the tuk-tuks charging up and down the main street. It wouldn’t be uncommon to hear fireworks and a marching band drumming away at four in the morning.
Such hustle and bustle servers as a flamboyant reminder that this is Latin America.
If you walk down the right boulevard at the right time in Bolivia, Colombia, Nicaragua or Cuba, you most certainly would hear some of these sounds. Still, every country and each city and almost any town have their own special tone.
Last week, up here in the highlands, some new noises came to town. The schools closed. Regular work hours subsided. Business as usual ceased to be, from Tuesday morning to the early hours of Friday. People from surrounding communities flooded the main streets of Comitancillo. All this for the main attraction: the town fair. A traveling amusement park equipped with prizes, games and ride tokens took up residence in a dirt field.
During the fair, the days started early and the evenings dragged on until early the next morning with live music accompanied by a certain amount of foolishness on the part of local men.
This is how Comitancillo takes a break from all the noise of the day to day.
As an outsider in town, fair or no fair, each day the pace of life is different here. The trick is getting used to the local tempo. After awhile you’re marching along to the chirps of the geckos, the whistle of the wind through the mountains, the rolling thunder of that roller coaster ride waiting for you, just around the corner.