Originally we drove up in the mountains in the afternoon to do a hike, but with the mist hanging heavy on the peaks, we decided it was no use. I remembered from three years ago that there was a pottery museum in the village from where we had planned to start our hike, and now we decided to go there instead. Three years ago the place was closed when we came, and I was ancious to know if it would be open this time. We were lucky. The place had just opened for its afternoon hours when we arrived.
As we came inside the courtyard we met two women, one working with the clay, the other.....amigo, amigo, the first one said smiling. Unfortunately we couldn´t share many words, as the two women spoke only Spanish, but still, with the few words we shared, with hands, smiles and faces we managed pretty well.
I understood that the pottery they made here was an old art, mastered only by a few people these days......me, my sister, my brother.....no, not my amigo.......she is here to talk with me......
Inside the museum I find information in English on the wall, and I note down in my diary:
Arguayo is a village in the mountains 930 meters above sea level. It was possibly founded by a group of shepherds of the Guanches. The ethnologist Luis Diego Cuscoy believes that the Potter center in Arguayo is the most interesting and well known place to study the development of the pottery of the Guanches because......the village is very secluded which delayed the development og its inhabitants and helped to maintain the traditional way of life f the Guanches as well as the features of their pottery......the technique of wharping is passed from one generation to the next........ Francisco Maria de León writes in his books on Canarians in 1802 that there were 15 lady petters working at the Pottery.......the heyday of the Potter Village Arguayo was the last third of the 19th century and the first third of the 20th century when practically every family worked in ceramics.
We walk around, looking at the different pots, reading about how they were used, trying to imagine life as it once was.
I feel thankful that there are people today who take care, who spend their time making sure we are not forgetting.
And I leave the place feeling richer than when I came,
carrying with me a wish to help take care of my own traditions.