We watched some dancing and singing, ate a bite from Annapurna, a local vegetarian restaurant and waited patiently for the very lively Lion Dance.
Drumming along with elaborate dancing in asian lion costume. One Red and One Green, a man in mask and robe with fan seemed to orchestrate the whole ensemble.
They moved through the plaza and the crowd, delighted the children and adults alike with the hard work on that very warm day and performed traditional dances from their culture. A spirited display of what art means to each of us. We watched the dancers switch off through the dance and keep going without missing a beat, we watched them work like acrobats and mimes creating the Lion's movements as if they were their own. What fun!
Then it was on to perusing the booths of amazing artwork. Fairly uneventful until we came to a Ubezikstan ceramic table. Apparently days earlier while visiting the museum for the parade, my folks came across this very happy man waving and found that he was Firdavs Yusupov, 8th generation ceramicist and excellent artist. All of his pieces had a familiar blue tone although each piece, of all sizes, was unique.
I caught myself delighted by the work and was making my way around the booth when an elder man approached me speaking no english. With him came a friend and local gallery owner to translate. The man lifted his creation and tapped the side of the pottery to make a beautiful throng of perfect symmetry. Truly it was the nicest piece amongst them. The man from Santa Fe conveyed to me that this was his piece and not his son whose booth we were in. He told me then that the man wanted me to have the piece, that was it, wrap it up. I was a bit alerted to the fact that although it was a very generous price, that it was not in my budget. As they continued wrapping the platter, the young artist's wife who spoke english approached me to ask what was happening, she was adorable and apologetic. Since my folks had already admired the pieces I offered the generous discount to them and tried to step away from the deal a bit. The gallery owner was even willing to purchase the piece on my behalf and take payments. This was to be mine. I waited and let all involved decide and low and behold we decided to become owners of this hand made 7th generation ornately decorated platter from Uzbekistan.
Although it is touching to own the piece, the story itself is where the richness of life is seen. Someone has a feeling to make an action which sets into motion a whole meeting of people from two very different worlds. I was pleased to relate to those I could not speak with and walk away with a piece of art that will forever touch my heart.