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“Dr. Beats And The Blessings Of The Golden Bucket”

The town of San Martín de Terreros (San Martín) is located in the Municipality of Dolores Hidalgo, the proclaimed “Cradle of National Independence.”  (in the State of Guanajuato). There are 695 people who live there. San Martín de Terreros (San Martín) is 2025 meters above sea level.

In the town there are 351 men and 344 women. The ratio women per men is 0.980, and the fecundity rate is 2.64 children per woman. People from outside the State of Guanajuato account for 0.86% of the total population. 13.67% of the inhabitants are illiterate (10.26% of the men, and 17.15% of the women). The average school enrolment ratio is 4.40 (4.43 within the men, and 4.38 within the women).

0.29% of the population is indigenous, and 0.43% of the inhabitants speak one of the indigenous languages. 100% of the inhabitants speak Mexican Spanish.  22.88% of the inhabitants (12 years old or older) are economically active (42.17% of the men, and 3.20% of the women). In San Martín de Terreros (San Martín) there are 168 dwellings. 93.38% of the dwellings have electricity, 96.03% have piped water, 39.07% have toilet or restroom, 68.87% have a radio receiver, 88.74% a television, 50.33% a refrigerator, 16.56% a washing-machine, 29.80% a car or a van, 1.32% a personal computer, 1.99% a landline telephone, 19.21% mobile phone, and 0.66% Internet access.

In the ranch of San Martín del Terrero every year on November 11th, hundreds of people ride into town on horseback. The early morning of that day the hills of the surrounding area begin to light up with the torches that riders from all over the region take on the traditional equestrian pilgrimage in honor of San Martín Caballero.  The sanctuary stands out from a distance, in a place where daily life is one of tranquility, on that special day and the three before and after it, comes the stores,  a large market in which everything is sold, and the blessing of the horses and riders who attend.

There are two Saint Martins in the Catholic religion; the recently canonized Saint Martin de Porres and the older Saint Martin of Tours. The latter, known in Latin America as San Martin Caballero, “Saint Martin the Horse-rider,” is the one most frequently encountered in luck charms such as the lucky Horseshoe. Born in Hungary during the late Roman empire, he was pressed into service in the Roman army, where he became a centurion, One day, while riding his horse, he chanced upon a near-naked beggar and cut his cloak in half to give the poor man a covering. That night he had a dream in which the beggar appeared to him as Jesus, so he quit the army and became a monk in Italy. He was later promoted to the rank of Bishop of Tours (in France) but always lived a simple life and gave a great deal to charity. Thus Saint Martin is the Patron Saint of those who hope strangers will aid them.

In Mexico Saint Martin Caballero is especially popular among shop-keepers, who rely on the kindness of passing strangers for their livelihood, and among truck drivers, who see in his horsemanship a parallel to their own manner of earning a living. Because the horse he rides is associated with the lucky horseshoe, he is also a favorite saint among gamblers.

“Dr. Beats And The Blessings Of The Golden Bucket” is available from BirrellJones.Gallery as a Watercolor tinted fine art Palladium Print as shown above.