May 19, 2008

Street Scenes: Shoe Shiner Mexico City

There is no shortage of shoe shiners in Mexico City like the one you see here. In fact you’ll find them all over Mexico, typically in a city or town’s zocalo (main square) and public parks.

I am always compelled to photograph shoe shiners when in Mexico. Perhaps it’s because this same photograph could have been taken 50 years ago with little difference other than the clothing worn. It’s a wholesome scene of a time gone by that still exists.

I like the way the mobile booths provide a comfortable place to sit and shelter from the elements. When is the last time you had a good old-fashioned shoeshine?

9 comments:

Jeffrey said...

Although I have seen this in my recent trip to Mexico, it is also surprising that I have actually seen shoe-shiners with their own booths in many cities that I have visited. Notice the guy reading the newspaper in the booth while getting his shoes shined. I really find it amazing that this is so commonplace in many countries. Maybe I'll try it some time. It looks relaxing...

backpakker said...

Its a beautiful moment and I like the thoughts expressed along with it...moments like these are a plenty in India and sometimes it looks like an eternity has passed and nothing has changed..thanks for your comment at backpakker and looking forward to seeing more of you..I would like to blogroll you as well, if you dont mind

Lakshmi

Wendy said...

Hi Lakshmi,
Thank you! So true about India which is dear to my heart (my husband is from Delhi) I seem to photograph outdoor barbers a lot when I'm in India for the same reasons I photographed the shoe shiners in Mexico. You've given me an idea for a future post.

Teacher Girl said...

When I lived in Mexico, I would often get my shoes shined in a little colonial town called San Miguel de Allende. It's not very common for women to have their shoes shined and men would often stop to take a long look at the blonde gringa in the shoe shiner's chair. My leather shoes and boots have not looked as good since!

Wendy said...

Hi Teacher Girl,
Now that you mention it i does typically seem like a men only activity.

Anonymous said...

Glad to see Mexico City is still making it onto your blog... my Canadian friends' 10 year old son Ethan was most fascinated by the shoeshiners when they were here at Xmas... seeing his total absorbtion in a routine DF street scene makes you see the city afresh again...
love Catherine xx

Wendy said...

Hi Catherine,
I have had the opportunity to experience Mexico in ways I might not have thanks to you!

Prêt à Voyager said...

Funny how Coke and Pepsi advertsing pop up ALL over the world.

Anne

Wendy said...

Anne,
true. I like the fact that you can still get the glass bottles in other parts of the world.