Page:Our Sister Republic - Mexico.djvu/176

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been validated.
170
SCENES IN THE MARKET PLACE.

Roman troops, I would back the National Guard, Capt. Ben Pratt, of San Francisco, or the MacMahon Guard, Gen. Cazneau, of the same place, to give odds and knock the starch out of the entire phalanx. Of course such men could as bravely die for their faith as if they weighed three hundred pounds, and measured six feet two inches in their stocking-feet, each; nevertheless, I am no longer surprised at the overthrow of Rome by the Goths and Vandals, since I have seen what kind of fighting stock they had.

One thing is apparent in these churches of Central Mexico, at the first glance, viz,: that the people who come there to worship are in earnest, and not hypocrites or doubters. They accept the whole faith as it is taught them, without hesitation or mental reservation, and never seek to evade its responsibilities, or hide the fact of their faith when in the presence of unbelievers. For that I honor them above many of my own countrymen and countrywomen.

Sunday is the great market-day in Lagos, and no sooner is morning service over than the two plazas and the streets between them swarm with buyers and sellers. Venders of peanuts, peppers, yams, vegetables, bread, tortillas, and fruits of all descriptions, raise enormous umbrellas, in shape exactly like those of the Chinese, covered with matting, and ten or twelve feet across, upon stout poles, spread out their little stocks on the pavement, and hour after hour cry their wares, announcing in a loud voice how much of any given thing they sell for a claquo or quartilla, a cent or three cents. Earthenware, charcoal, sugar, salt, and other goods are sold in one plaza, dry goods in another, and beef in little shops on a street between the two. Men