Diary of Harriet Low

Monday, September 14th, 1829

The first thing I heard this morning was the ringing of bells, and the military crossing the bridge as they returned from mass. About ten we rode out through the city to visit the churches. The cathedral was not open. We went first to San Domingo. It is a pretty church, but rather gaudy. There were several women there who had just been to confession. They go away happy, thinking they are absolved from all sins, and ready to begin a new list ! We then went home, and dined, with eleven Americans. After dinner rode upon the Calzada and through the city, and on our return had some music and two Indian dancers, who danced the fandango, keeping time with the castanets. They were very graceful in their movements. After tea drove to the Palace Square to hear the music of the three fine bands, which play here every Sunday and holiday from 8 to 9 p.m.