Monday, August 15, 2011

The Natives are Restless

One more day in the amazing Grand Canyon (for this trip anyway) and I decided I couldn't miss the Native Indian dancers who put on a show at the Hopi House. This family dances several times a day, rain or shine, even in the heat of todays sun.  Awesome music and wonderful dancers, but they moved so fast most of the time I wasn't able to get great photos. Yes, I can do amazing things with my camera, but really, there are limits.  This is the front of the Hopi House.

Since buckskin is hard to obtain and pricey, most of the dancers have used a combination of materials, leather and yarn for their outfits.  First to take the stage was this little girl doing the Bell Dance.
Next was Mom who performed the Womans Dance.  Interesting that the women danced slowly and the men fast!  In this dance, the long strings moved dramatically from front to back.
Here you can see the front of her dress.  Funny too, to see the modern day influence.  Every dancer was chewing gum!!!
Before the men came on, they announced that these dancers ask for donations to help pay for their college education.  The donations were collected in a very old hand woven basket that was to die for.  To the crowds credit, they were very forthcoming.
The men performed several dances, including one to the code talkers, credited with creating and breaking codes during the war, which benefited us greatly.
Finally this very shy little girl came on and performed, madly chewing her gum!!!  Later, I realized this whole family was camped next to me in the village ... and they had a VERY cute little dog that thought he ruled the world.  After a run-in with Jessie ... it was a tie!!
At the end, people were invited to the stage for pictures with the family, which I declined.  I was able to speak to them later by my RV.
The last two images are of the treasures I purchased in Tusayan and the Grand Canyon.  I have several other pieces of turquoise that I took out of storage ... and now wear at least one piece every day!!  Each decoration has a meaning.  For example, the small silver drops represent raindrops and abundance.  The feathers, long life.
The large bracelet was a pawn item that I was able to get at a good discount.  The remaining jewelry was made by Justin Morris, who bargained with me for 45 minutes!!  In our travels, Patty and I looked at pottery and baskets everywhere.  We did find some affordable baskets, but the large pottery pieces ran $700 and up.  So when I got home, I took at second look at this piece of pottery that was from my Grandmother who lived in the southern Sierra Nevadas.  This pot was used as a planter  ... it had cactus in it for 30 years and possibly longer.  When my mom passed away, I dumped it out and have had it on my shelf ever since.  It is in great condition ... and I now.have much more respect for it and it's maker even if I don't know exactly where it came from.
I'm off to Las Vegas for a Photoshop World Convention.  Leaving my credit cards home!!!!!

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