When I say bizarre it’s more of a tragedy really, a Spanish church plonked on the top of a huge pyramid, this with a full view of one of the local temperamental volcanoes, Popocatépetl or more easily known as ‘Popo’ and Iztaccihuatl or ‘Izta’. According to one Aztec Legend, Popo was a great warrior who loved Izta. He went off to war and when Izta heard false news of Popo’s fall in battle, she died of a broken heart. When Popo returned to find his love gone, he vowed to always watch over and defend her. The shape of Iztaccihuatl mountain is that of a ‘sleeping woman’. It is also said locally, that when trouble is brewing in the world Popo becomes active
My Odysseun saga has taken me all round the Yucatan peninsula and further, on various road trips. In these times of adversity I think I can safely quote Sinatra and say ‘I did it my way’
I’ll add more later but I want to get out while I still can and the dark thoughts enter my head again. Love you all.
OR, A MOUNTAINTOP ZAPOTEC CITY LINKED CLOSELY TO Teotihuacán and mitla
It’s huge, it’s Zapotec and it’s completely different to what I expected.
The Zapotecs were a sedentary culture living in villages and towns, in houses constructed with stone and mortar. They recorded the principal events in their history by means of hieroglyphics, and in warfare they made use of a cotton armour. The well-known ruins of Mitla have been attributed to them.
(I will write another post about the fabulous jade and gold discoveries, that are housed in Oaxaca Palace Museum. This is closed at the moment but I’ll be able to dig up some photos from before. I really need to write a bit more about the amazing Zapotecs)
I had got up ready to go to the archaeological museum but its been closed. No signs on the door except the opening hours, and through the peephole a man informed me that they didn’t know when they’d open again to which I replied rather hotly I must confess well put a sign on the door then and change the bloody Google details. He said that’s a good idea I’ll put a sign on the door, as if he’d just thought of it. Yes some people have travelled thousands of miles to see these artefacts I whined. His beady eyes perused me as if I was mad. And sort it out on Google and your site this is the second time I’ve come here. He was making me cross and I felt as if he might just let me in if I kept banging on about it.
What they don’t tell you is that it’s miles from the highway. So daring Dan here negotiated for a ride there after buying an ice cold bottle of water and got myself a motorbike ride.
OR, FLYING FREE AGAIN JUST FOR THE DAY. MAKING DECISIONS AWAY FROM TULUM.
Been very unsure what to do next. Return to UK where my new house is finally ready, or go to Oaxaca or Veracruz. Both are far and really need to been part flight from either Merida or Chetumal. So I went for the second time yesterday to the french patisserie to work. It was a stroke of luck. Not only is Giles, who works there a like minded (we had a long political chat), but he came up with a site for me to visit that I’d never heard of, Ek Balam. The site of the pyramid of the angels. Thank god, a decent bit of nearby archaeology.
OR, HOW A OLD BIRD CLIMBED TWO MOUNTAINS IN A DAY.
When I made the decision to visit prehistoric cave dwellings that have been inhabited for 10,000 years I thought it would be a little tricky but not that hard. yesterday I worked my little travellers socks off to visit two of the major sites in Mitla. I had chosen two, maybe three places but hadn’t anticipated that they weren’t just there like most tourist sites, they are tricky to get to and a lot of leg work. I would advise not to try for them unless you’re feeling top notch and are prepared to go slowly.
Now I’ve been to Mitla two years ago to see the famous Mayan site of Mitla and also Hierve el Agua, which now sadly is permanently closed. Both were things of wonder so I was excited to be even more daring this time with a bit of pre history caves and their paintings all in the same area. I have always wanted to see some more ancient art in caves but have only once before been to an island off Sicily and no photos were allowed but here one has the privilege of getting out the old camera. I had no idea how remote they actually were and how hard you had to climb on treacherous slippery terrain after the rains. Although the soil had dried off there are a huge number of springs which are obviously spurting out excess water as you go higher up and make the soil and rocks really slick.
MY SUNDAY OUTING TO VISIT 10.000 YEAR OLD ANCESTRAL CAVES.
OR, ALL THROUGH THE VILLAGE TO THE LAGOON AND MORE.
OR THE OLD BIRD GETS PUSHED TO HER LIMITS BY GOING UP AND DOWN SHEER MOUNTAIN TRACKS .
I arrived in Tehuacán exhausted and burnt out and had done nothing for days once I found the museums and site which I specifically travelled here for were all closed. I had allowed myself a meltdown, a collapse if you will. I had stayed in my room just sneaking out for food and drinks. I was absolutely broken. Then as usual, I shook myself down and got myself a sort of improvised tour.
Reception told me that the guide knew the area well and just because the gardens were closed there were plenty of other paths with exactly the same types of flora. The botanical gardens were just a more tarted up area of the same old, same old. As it transpired they were right so I got myself a bus and headed out of town to Zapotitlan. As soon as I got on that bus I was straight back into adventure mode, my agoraphobia melted and I was ready for action. The bus driver dumped me at the edge of the road and I walked back to the Zapotitlan letters in a mist of fine powder and exhaust smoke.
OR, HANG ON A MINUTE EDITOR! SHE’S ONLY BEEN THREES TIMES IN OVER SIX WEEKS?! SHE’S BEEN TO THOSE CENOTE THINGS, LIKE PONDS MORE OFTEN
Yes I’ve neglected the beach rather and been to cenotes, archaeological sites, museums, and going on road trips so now it’s time for the seaside as both office and to go into.
NOW I’M JUST BACK from my road trip, which did indeed feel like Thelma and Louise at times, or just Thelma, I can relax again and start catching up with it all but I thought we would have a beach intermission first.