Burn, Burn, Burn!
Here I have been railing about pumpkin flavored dog days of summer and it turns out My Fair New Mexico had a gut punch to deliver.
Oh Fair, how I adore you, but is it *really* time to burn Zozobra again? I guess it is.
I always really enjoy watching Old Man Gloom burn away my troubles, but to be honest it’s 70 degrees and today I sat out on the patio at lunchtime and drank lemonade while a strappy sandal dangled from a toe.
How can I have gloom in this gorgeous summer weather?
Argh! Not ready, not ready, not ready, : covers ears : lalalalalalalalala I can’t heeeear you!
To assuage my sadness, I sought out my coworker, a fellow New Mexican (not a native but lived in Santa Fe for many years) and said “dude, did you know they burn Zozobra tonight?”
He had wide eyes like me, then said “That must mean mariachis are currently wandering through the streets of Santa Fe.”
Then we both got wistful.
After a few moments I said, “Man, I sure remember those days of being wobbling drunk on the plaza and shouting ‘burn, burn, burn!”
The effect of chanting while Old Man Gloom burned and groaned and flapped his arms was always very visceral.
I could tell my coworker was remembering too. He nodded solemnly in agreement. Then we sighed in unison.
Yeah. Days like these make me miss my home state. A lot.
Oh Fair New Mexico, I love, I love you so.
Side note: Lest anyone learn about Zozobra and think it’s a knock off of Burning Man, I should note that the purely New Mexico tradition of burning Zozobra started in 1926. Burning Man started in 1986. And the Celtic tradition of burning the wicker man is even older than that.
Fun fact: Zozobra’s hair color changes every year. It was yellow last year and photos on Mr Z’s Facebook page would make it seem this year his hair is gray. (Edit: I was fooled, it is green this year) Details for tonight’s event are here.
Image from the ABQJournal and first published in 2010.