In 1991 Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired at the age
of 38. Now, into their 3rd decade of this
financially independent lifestyle, they invite you
to take advantage of their wisdom and experience.
The Ancient Weaving
Center of Culture Rosario
Comitan De Dominguez,
Billy and Akaisha Kaderli
The front of the Centro
Cultural Rosario Castellanos
Attached to the church on the
Plaza in Comitan is the Centro Cultural Rosario Castellanos.
Built on the grounds of the former Dominican convent, the beautiful
stone building now offers dance or marimba classes. You can visit
the cafeteria, library or admire the view of the convent from the
colorful and well-maintained patio.
Mural of local history and patio
Inside the old Dominican convent, there is a
beautiful patio surrounded by manicured gardens. On the wall there is a mural of
the town's local history.
200 year old weaving loom
The sign attached to the top of the loom
reads: "Do not touch."
I wondered aloud to Billy if this loom was
still operable. It was all threaded and set up for making a very long stretch of
cloth (called rebozo), but I thought perhaps that was just for display.
Before I knew it, this man came up to answer
my question. YES! This loom is operable. Would we like to see how it works?
Warp and weft threads
The warp threads are the
black ones and the needle passes through these to create the weft threads and
therefore, the pattern. As the pedals are pushed, different strings lift or fall
down. A smaller spindle is "thrown" from side to side while the fibers are
caught in between.
I can't imagine how this
machine was threaded in order to compose this complex pattern. I have no idea
how this works or how someone figures it out.
You can see how much of the
cloth has already been woven by looking at the larger spindle at the bottom.
A closer look at the
As I was soon to find out,
this diamond pattern took certain foot pedal placements in order for it to be
created. Initially, it was the 1st and 4th pedal down, then 1st and 3rd, then
3rd and 4th and so on, until the diamond rose up. At some point, the pedals were
in reverse order and the Master Weaver knew the pedal sequence by heart.
Explaining the pattern
Here you see the Master Weaver explaining how
the pattern is created. He was very meticulous and seemed entranced by the
weaving itself. You could tell he loved this work.
I am amazed at his skill
With great speed and dexterity this man
propelled his weaving spindle through the black threads. His feet were holding
down the foot pedals below in a specially devised order for the pattern to
appear. He showed such grace and skill I began to literally laugh with joy and
I had never seen anything like it.
It hadn't crossed my mind that weaving was
this complex nor did I realize that it took so much coordination between eyes,
hands and feet.
Oh my gosh, now it's my turn!
I know, I know, the idea of weaving must be
thrilling to you, but I love textile art. When he asked me if I would actually
like to try to do this on a 200 year old machine, I readily accepted.
I was nervous and discombobulated. All
directions were in Spanish and this man was very patient as I slowly went
through the paces of whisking that spindle through the threads and pressing down
the foot pedals.
Whipping the spindle, pressing the threads
My first few attempts of whipping the spindle
through the black threads were abysmal. Several times I got locked up in a few
fibers, or only made it one-third of the way across. The next time I threw it so
forcefully that it almost went to the loom next door. The Master weaver caught
it for me as it left the designated weaving area.
I did not have the right feel just yet.
Eventually it all came together and I was
less and less afraid that I would break the machine, snag up the pattern or lose
The Master Weaver was gracious enough to tell
me I was a "quick learner." I returned his compliment with a smile of relief.
Even though it wasn't quite like white water
rafting, I was exhilarated and grateful for the opportunity.
A section of the famous mural
The mural in the Cultural Center depicts the
history of Chiapas and of Comitan. On the left you can see some Maya ruins, and
on the right is the Church at the Plaza. Unfortunately, we don't know the
significance of the woman in the window with her book. She could be someone
famous, a girlfriend or wife, or she could portray the mood of the era.
Center of Culture Rosario Castellanos
Primera Avenida Ote. Sur, Centro, Comitán de
Domínguez, Chiapass, Mexico
Phone:+52 963 632 0624
Opening hours 9am-9pm
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About the Authors
Billy and Akaisha Kaderli are
recognized retirement experts and internationally published authors on
topics of finance, medical tourism and world travel. With the wealth of
information they share on their award winning website RetireEarlyLifestyle.com,
they have been helping people achieve their own retirement dreams since
1991. They wrote the popular books, The
Adventurer’s Guide to Early Retirement and Your
Retirement Dream IS Possible available on their website
Early Lifestyle appeals to a different
kind of person – the person who prizes their
independence, values their time, and who doesn’t
want to mindlessly follow the crowd.