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Mexico Has Two Beautiful Basic Seasons  

Summer rain in Patzcuaro, Mexico
Credit: Victoria Ryan

Many of you know that most of Mexico has two beautiful basic seasons: The dry season, which lasts generally from November through May, and the rainy season, which runs from June through October.

This is true all over the country with some meteorological adjustments for location, but here in the Colonial Highlands at over 7,000 ft, in elevation, the effect is quite stunning. In a sudden transformation that can begin as early as mid-May or as late as mid-June, the rains bring an intense, verdant hue to everything. Leaves that were merely green are suddenly emerald or hunter green and every shade in between. It reminds me of photos I’ve seen of Ireland or terraced fields in Thailand. There is so much living green that it looks like it belongs in National Geographic.  I swear that the corn in the fields along the roads grow a foot taller from one day to the next.  Pines at the higher elevations are shiny and happy with new pale-sliver green shoots.  Ground cover on the hillsides turns into a green carpet seemingly overnight.
Rivers start to run again. Lakes begin to fill again.

There are many celebrations designating the rainy season to be the beginning of abundance and fertility and many ways to pray to thank the gods and goddesses for this living generosity.

May begins as the season of the Blessed Virgin Mary among the Concheros.  Mary stands for fertility, for fecundity for plenty. Mary will reign in the pre-Hispanic calendar till November. All celebrations will have her as their queen.

Corpus is celebrated in the Purhepecha pueblos the first week of June. Corpus is the celebration of abundance. All of the villages celebrate in a slightly different way, but what they have in common is this: organizers throw gifts to the hundreds of participants in an absolutely glorious representation of the gifts of life that have been given. It is a celebration and a wish, a prayer to the universe.

I love the sound of rain on my roof.  I buy extra umbrellas for the Hotel Casa Encantada so no one gets caught in a downpour. Usually it pours in the late afternoon or evening, clears up and the rest of the day we have beautiful blue sky with fluffy white clouds. I love the excitement of hearing thunder in the distance. As it comes closer and closer the sound reverberates everywhere before it passes to the other side.

What qualifies as a flower-filled glorious riot of spring comes at the end of the rains in November. When the rainy season ends, a show of wildflowers blossoms through the countryside. There are literally fields of Cosmos and Queen Anne’s Lace and some other lovely bright orange flower whose name escapes me.

This year, there is much more to celebrate than the mere beginning of the season of abundance. Patzcuaro turned GREEN in the Covid-19 designated phases of safety. We have had no new deaths and no new infections for some time. I am very proud of the citizens of Patzcuaro who are about 90 percent masked, distanced and cautious. The Plaza Grande is open now and I imagine the museums will follow soon.

Life returns and renews on many fronts, so come to the Colonial Highlands. There is so much to do and see. So many experiences and adventures to have after such a difficult time for all of us.