Huatulco Life was inspired by people with a passion for Huatulco and the Mexican lifestyle. It is a place to find out more information about the region and enjoy the beauty of the Oaxacan coastline through the photo gallery. From time to time, other interesting tidbits about Mexico make their way into the pages of this blog. Enjoy!

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Monday, June 13, 2011

Tuto and the Buddha

Today's post is from Renée Netzel

I would like to introduce you to Tuto. Our new friend is Chilean by nationality but he now lives in Mexico...and when I asked him where he lives, specifically in Mexico, he promptly replied “in my car”.  You see, Tuto lives “la vida libre”...passing from town to town, city to city, and beach to beach...going wherever he pleases, whenever he pleases. And you can’t help but smile when you first meet Tuto. He is a robust man, presumably in his mid-40‘s, with dirty blonde dreadlocks, a scruffy beard and metal caps on his teeth. He wears floral print shirts and he sleeps under the stars. 

We had the privilege of meeting Tuto just a few days ago. We had just finished a delicious lunch at the Krazy Kraut in La Crucecita, and as we were walking back to our car we were stopped dead in our tracks. Right in front of us was a small truck parked, it’s flatbed filled with glorious carved wood a fan and a spare tire to boot! And, as we gazed at the interesting pieces of art in the back of this little truck, up walks Tuto with a big smile on his face and a handshake to greet us.

Our Spanish skills, still admittedly a little lacking, were certainly put to the test as this Chilean/Mexican man started excitedly telling us about his work. Turns out he is a traveling artist...a vagabond, if you will, inclined to wander and continuously travel, showing off his unique and interesting pieces at every stop he makes.

Tuto works with wood...all kinds of wood...anything he can find on the beach, along the road, or fallen in the forest. But he never cuts a tree down for the sake of his art. He only uses what nature has already left for him to use. He carves his masterpieces with a variety of tools, ranging from a chainsaw to a carving knife. He studies the wood and creates the image he sees in his mind. Tuto is also a very spiritual man, I think. His carved images reminding me of deities past worshipped by tribes living on this land.

Well, I suppose you can guess that we fell in love with a particular sculpture on the back of this truck. You see, Mason and I are suckers for this kind of authentic art and even more for the story behind it’s creation. There at the back, behind all of the other pieces, stood this Buddha calling out to us. Tuto tells us it will bring good luck...afterall, he carved it under a full moon on a beach just south of Tulum, a former Mayan civilization in the Yucatán Peninsula. We were sold! And after a little negotiating on the price, a skill I am terrible at, we soon became the proud owners of this truly unique piece of art.

We have placed it in our office, in hopes of finding the good luck and prosperity that Tuto promised it would bring. We gaze at it periodically and we even rub it’s head from time to time. The reality is, even if it doesn’t bring our business more luck, the truth of the matter is we are already lucky...lucky to have met our new friend Tuto.


  1. What a wonderful story! I love your Buddha, it's amazing.