The legend goes like this:
The "anima of Taguapire" is the name they lovingly assigned to the humble peasant woman named María Francisca Duarte.
They say that this sweet lady was a country woman, with a strong character and a very charitable heart. She spared no effort to help everyone who came up and asked. They also say that she was an excellent midwife.
They say that she was born around 1846, in the state of Guarico, and her body rests in a mausoleum in the town of Santa María De Ipire.
The poor woman doesn't know when, but she dies of malaria. Family and friends decide to take her to the nearest cemetery.
Already very close to the town of Santa María de Ipire, they say that those who were carrying her body saw how the river overflowed. They then thought of letting the body rest next to a Taguapire tree, while the riverbed returned to its regular level.
This is how the next day, when they saw the river return to its previous level, they took Maria's body, but they discovered that the body was now very heavy, so heavy that even all of them together could not lift it.
Her relatives then make the decision to bury her under the Taguapire tree.
Legend has it that one day a peasant sat by the tree and taking about his sorrows. He tells her that if she, being so good, allows him to have abundance on his land and livestock, He would thank her by enclosing her surroundings so that no one would step on her when passing.
However, the peasant progressed but forgot the promise he made to Francisca Duarte. One night he receives a visit from the spirit of Francisca Duarte and she demands that he fulfill his part.
Thus begins the story of the favors granted by the "anima of Taguapire" or Mama Pancha as the locals affectionately call her.
Today, the Pancha Duarte mausoleum is located on the entire road that leads to Santa María de Ipire. It's something of a mandatory stop for anyone who drives their car on these roads. Transport drivers have her as a protector on the road.
I also passed through that town while I was working on the plains. I visited the mausoleum, not to make wishes, but out of curiosity. It reminded me of another mausoleum that I visited when I was studying. The entire interior, floor, walls and exterior, is full of thank you plaques (the usual), there are pictures of cars, trucks, houses, and everything you can think of with an inscription of thanks for the wishes fulfilled.
If you ever travel to Guarico state, and you arrive at Santa María de Ipire, you will see the mausoleum that people and devotees built for their protector.