Friday, May 27, 2016

The Craziness of Corpus Christi

     Getting to be a part of Cuzco’s enormous Corpus Christi celebration is definitely at the top of my list of favorite parts of this trip. On Wednesday we were able to see the pre-celebrations with Alexandra taking us to the San Pedro Cathedral, and it was astounding to see the number of people who came out all day long to watch the Saints all get brought to the main Cathedral.
10AM Mass Group--those hats though!
     These crowds were NOTHING compared to Thursday’s main event though. Rachel and I went to the 8 AM (though it actually started earlier) mass in the Cathedral where the Saints had stayed overnight. Somewhat amusingly, as we went to enter the church, the security guard told us we couldn’t enter, that there was mass going on. Luckily after telling him that we were indeed there to attend mass, he let us in, but it was interesting to see that he only saw us as American tourists trying to get into their church on a day of celebration.
     Attending the 10 AM outdoor mass was even more intriguing, and we got to experience parts of the mass in both Spanish and then in Quechua. Rachel and I even rocked some of the Peruvian paper hats that Profe bought!  

     After lunch while watching the Saints taken around the plaza, a couple of us went to el Mercado de San Pedro, which we thankfully were able to get to because of parallel streets. This was the most crowded I’ve ever seen a part of Cuzco, and we were constantly being herded and pushed through the crowds of both tourists and Peruvians.
Eucharist carried through the Plaza
     The market was also busy, but not nearly as bad as the plazas. Going on Thursday after being there Wednesday was also interesting, as it was clear that many of the shops were closed for the day for Corpus Christi. People were not nearly as pushy about selling their goods, and it was a very pleasant experience before having to make our way back through the insane crowds on the way to Casa Elena.

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