Nancy Hartney’s “Rural Mexico: A Conundrum of Soda Pop and Folk Ritual,” essay earns an award at the Oklahoma Writers Federation, Inc. 2021 convention. “Conundrum” is a sensory trip through the town of Chamulas, in the Mexican state of Chiapas. Zapatistas and Subcomandante Marcos made the area famous in 1994 with their militant uprising against the government. Decedents of the ancient Maya people, most who still speak Tzotzil, heavily populate the area and are congregants of a totally unique church, San Juan Bautista, described in the essay.
The Conundrum essay highlights sights and people from Hartney’s travel through old Mexico. Her short story, ‘Playing Checkers’ from If the Creek Don’t Rise, likewise uses her travel experiences involving a disaffected expat living in an out-of-the-way village pondering his lost love. In Mexico, everything from shopping in an outside market, dodging goats on the streets, and riding the bus, translates into adventure.
Hartney is the author to two short story collections (If the Creek Don’t Rise and Washed in the Water) as well as a novel, If You Walk Long Enough. These books can be found on Amazon or in your local library.