Tuesday, January 5, 2010

El Morro loves the camera baby

Had another round at the beach (oh just be jealous already) then packed off around 4pm to head to Old San Juan. We've been doing a lot of filming at the dusk magic hour because the light at that hour in this city? Splendid.

We take some footage of El Morro. Google search some images and you will see what a wonderful performer this historical site can be. He performed magnificently for the camera. El Morro is quite the ham.

Next we filmed around Old San Juan to get a sense of an average evening on the streets. I'm hoping to juxtapose some of these images with the ones of the fiestas de la calle. That way, the contrast between what the streets normally look like in comparison to the festival crazyness will be apparent.

I headed into a small artisan shop to look at some cards. Wouldn't you know, the family that owns this store are experts on three kings, folklore, and masks! They actually make Taino inspired masks and collectibles, by hand using natural organic materials.

I got into a conversation with the shop owner, and asked for an interview. He point blank said that honestly, he was not in a good mood today. He was smiling because I was a customer. He actually said it in a much nicer way then it comes off in writing. I appreciate his candor. We did exchange contact information, and before I left, he pointed to the liquor and candies he had for sale. "This shop was doing so bad, that we've had to resort to selling alchohol and other shit to stay afloat." I understand his frustration and anxiety. I would be angry too, if I was in his position. It's not fair that these intangibles, these belief systems, these stories and crafts and rituals, are what sustains people, enriches people's lives, and can basically be the sole reason to keep on living (See the book Fire in the Placa, about the Fire Festivals in Berga) yet it is impossible to have respect of a financial nature, within the Western world's economic system.
Anyway, tomorrow is the Three King's Day. People here call them Santos, although technically according to Catholicism, they are not. So, it's a big deal.

I'm not sure what we are doing tomorrow. If we can rent a car for cheap, we're heading to the town of Juana Diaz for the big festival. If not, we'll be filming in Old San Juan. Either way, the day has been long, and I'm looking forward to a Caribbean winter's nap. zzzzzzzzzzzz

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