Sunday, February 14, 2016

The Bells of Huánuco, or why I gave up and bought earplugs

One of the principal cities in the Mission is Huánuco, found 6-7 hours driving time north of Huancayo.  There are about 180,000 citizens, and roughly 60 of our young missionaries work there.  We visit the city about once a month for one reason or another, and we usually stay at the Gran Hotel Huánuco, which was built eleven years before I was.
It is an example of faded Latin elegance and charm.  One of its only disadvantages is its location. While it is on the main plaza of Huánuco, it is also near the Cathedral of Huánuco.
Unfortunately, for all the good intentions that went in to its design, this religious building is a prime example of not-so-good late 1960's architecture, showing little Latin elegance or charm, and from the outside more closely resembles a movie theatre or an ice skating rink.  
Different tastes in architecture can certainly exist, but whoever designed the tones for the carillon should be tied to a bench in the main plaza for punishment and made to listen at 6:00 AM and 6:00 PM.  
The aural display begins appropriately enough with the booming tones of a large cast bell, but after three gongs, a sound which most closely resembles trash can lids being used for cymbals begins and lasts for at least half a minute.  If you don't believe me, please click on the link below:

Like I said....

We hope that your cathedral bells sound better, and that you are never in Huánuco, Peru at 6:00 AM or PM.
Dave & Paula

PS  It really, really really goes on that long.  And sounds that bad.


Patti said...

You nailed it! Those bells really do sound like someone hitting trash can lids. It sounded as awful as you described it. Yikes!

Julie said...

Oh my!! Someone paid money for that!!!