On Saturday morning, a group stopped traffic as they were marching to encourage traffic to slow down and think of the children trying to navigate the crowded streets of Oaxaca. At first, I couldn’t tell what it was, but then I looked inside the lane of marching parents and saw the congestion caused by the bicycles with training wheels, toy cars, wagons, and tricycles.
I was even blocked by the onslaught of miniature traffic as the march made its way into Llano Park. Standing there, staring, I almost didn’t hear the tiny, frightened shout of !Con per—meeeeeeeeeeeeee—so! (Con permiso is equivalent to excuse me) as a tiny tricycle wheel rolled over my left foot.
The second march I saw was of people with a herd of pet dogs (mascotas). They were protesting the cruel treatment of animals, and their timing is good because as the tourist season unfolds, the ubiquitous skinny dogs just disappear from the streets. Rumor has it, nothing good becomes of them, that it’s better not to know.
Instead, people parade with their perfectly polished pets, passing the remaining skinny dogs and their hungry stares. Why not bring collars and make them pets? Why not throw dog chow into the streets as some processions offer rice, beads, or sweets?