The Magic Lantern: Having a Ball and Christmas Eve

By José Tomás de Cuéllar; Margo Glantz et al. | Go to book overview

II
How Couples Were Recruited and
Guests Invited

There was a mother whose three daughters took the waters at the Pane Baths* almost every day because they needed it. These three girls had three admirers who took the same waters, but without needing it. Since this mother had younger children as well, she stayed at home, and the three girls rode the public coaches that make the rounds of the watering places.

On entering the coach, they would find one admirer already seated there, and a few stops later, the other two would hop on board.

Through this hydrotherapeutic regime, the girls' health improved bit by bit. They came home wearing a towel down their back to receive their damp, curly manes, which were held in place by a narrow blue ribbon that went around the nape of their neck and was tied in a bow where their hair parted. They smelled like naiads and emanated the essence of algae; and the freshness of

____________________
*
One of several spas in Mexico City popular among the middle class.

-15-

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The Magic Lantern: Having a Ball and Christmas Eve
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Series Editors'' General Introduction vii
  • Introduction xi
  • Notes xxxiii
  • Prologue 3
  • Having a Ball 5
  • I- Preparations for the Ball 7
  • II- How Couples Were Recruited and Guests Invited 15
  • III- About the Machuca Sisters and Others like Them 25
  • IV- In Which, among Other Things, the Girls Who Frequent the Pane Baths Prepare Themselves for the Colonel''s Ball 34
  • V- Concerning What Happened to the Virtue of a Lady Invited to Saldaña''s Ball 45
  • VI- How the Appearances Maintained by These Upstarts Tend to Compromise Any Serious Result 69
  • VII- The Ball Begins 79
  • VII- How the Heat from Candles, Combined with a Santa Barbara Cognac and Other Evils, Can Create Pandemonium at a Ball 100
  • IX- Conclusion 115
  • Christmas Eve - Negatives Exposed from December 24 To December 25, 1882 119
  • I 121
  • II 123
  • III 126
  • IV 129
  • V 133
  • VI 136
  • VII 140
  • VIII 142
  • IX 146
  • XI 156
  • XII 162
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