In October, events in San Miguel de Allende definitely slooowww down. The summer season is well and truly over and end-of-year holidays are far off. Folks have more time to just sit on a bench in the autumn sunshine and stare at the changing shades of pink in the Parroquia stones. Or watch the kids chase balloons and each other. Or read the paper between those eyes-closed, basking-in-the-sun moments.

October 12 – Dia de la Raza (Columbus Day). From a Mexican viewpoint, when Christopher Columbus sailed the ocean blue in 1492 and landed in the New World, it was not a good day for the local folks he found here. Mexicans generally refer to the event as “El Encuentro,” the Encounter. And the day most of us call Columbus Day is referred to here as “Día de la Raza,” Day of the Race.

The point is that the fateful meeting between the Old World of Europe and the New World of the Americas was the beginning of the race of Mestizos, those of mixed European and indigenous blood, which makes up a huge majority of the Mexican people.

October 31 – Halloween. Despite the wonderful traditions of Days of the Dead, Mexican children have been quick to adopt the concept of Halloween and Trick or Treat. Expect to see kids running around with small plastic jack-o-lanterns and chiming “Halloween.”

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