Monday, August 6, 2012

Cuenca Impressions


It’s Sunday morning in Cuenca with all the beauty of a sunny, blue sky day abounding with majestic grey and white clouds. The quiet in Parque de San Blas gives a peace so welcoming to me that I could sit on this bench across from the church of San Blas happily for the rest of the day.  It’s 10:40 a.m.  I’m writing while waiting for the 11:00 a.m. mass.

Parque de San Blas
I cannot believe how much at home I feel in Cuenca.  Its history feels alive...in the people...in the Spanish colonial structures.  It calms my nervous disposition to be here.

Church of San Blas
The church was packed. The people were well dressed compared to Americans going to mass I see on Sundays at St. Matthew’s in San Mateo.  I saw a people reverent and seemingly affected more by the presence of God than interested in each other. There was a spry, bedraggled senior inside the church. He appeared at ease and while it was communion he walked about the aisle holding a wicker basket for donations---not for the church mind you, for himself. 

Interior of San Blas
The splendid interior of the church was markedly composed of colored statuary of course of Jesus and Mary, an ornate altar, a high wood ceiling painted off white and bordered with a pattern of small niche block. The pews looked to be a light walnut wood well preserved yet so old I could see worm holes in places---the tell tale sign of antiquity.

Walking home from Simon Bolivar Spanish School
I would say my impression in general is the Cuencanos are a patient and careful people.  Sure the city has its rush hour at the end of the day. But the city is steeped in a sense of calm.

Nobody anywhere can be impatient and mostly rushing about and at the same time create the works of art and craft I see in Cuenca.