Chichén Itzá and new Friends

My recent trip to Mexico was broken into two sections.  The first was with Devin on Isla Mujeres. The second was for the wedding ceremony and celebration of Jasmine and Rohan in Tulum, MX.

I had dropped Devin off at the Airport and met up with 10 or so other folks headed down to Tulum to enjoy the beach, the sites, and the wedding couple.

The two hour drive allowed for those of us in that van to share some stories of how we knew the bride or groom and where we were all from.  Turns out that all but a few people in the van had a connection to NE Ohio.  Since both bride and groom grew up there, it shouldn’t be a surprise, but I probably hadn’t been around so many Ohioans since a family reunion.  It was easy conversations and mixed with stories, laughter and the good hearted ribbing you get when you immediately feel comfortable with people.

We met up with the wedding party, family and other folks that had already made their way to Tulum and had a delicious dinner on the jungle side of the beach road where all the food was prepared fresh or in a wood fired oven and grill.

The next day, ten of us had signed up for a guided tour to the ancient Mayan Ruins of Chichén Itzá.  Most were the same group that I had been in the previous day’s van with so back in we went and off to the ruins.

Chichén Itzá is considered one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. The stepped pyramids, temples, columned arcades, and other stone structures of Chichén Itzá were sacred to the Maya and a sophisticated urban center of their empire from A.D. 750 to 1200.

The most recognized structure is El Castillo or the Temple of Kukulkan.  It is build around the mathematics of the days and seasons of the year.  At the equinox the serpents body can be seen writhing down the sides of the structure.  When you stand in front of it and clap your hands the call of the bird is echoed to you (instead of the sound of your clap). Quite amazing.

El Castillo 1

The Ball court is the largest known in the Americas.  During ritual games that settled disputes among regions, players tried to hit a 12lb pound rubber ball through stone scoring hoops set high on the walls.  They used their hips to move the balls and shoot through the hoops.  As the hoops are not large in diameter games could last for days and competition was fierce as the losers were put to death.

ball court scoring hoop Chichen Itza ball court

The observatory is where their astronomers kept charts of the skys.chichen itza observatory

The city also included the temple of 1000 pillars.  The roof over the pillars is long gone, but you can imagine much taking place in the shade and structure of the pillars that go on and on.

1000 pillars temple

Daily, there is a bustle of marketing happening with locals selling their wares. This artisan was carving his wares as he sold finished pieces next to him.

mayan carverAfter the ruins we went to one of the many cenotes in the Yucatan Peninsula.

Cenote

It was gorgeous and the water so inviting that some of us went for a dip.  For me it was magical and the water and surroundings were amazing to be apart of.

swimming in the cenoteThe day could have ended just then and would have been full, but as it was we hurried back to Tulum as some of us gals were to be included in an all woman’s Temazcal Sweat.

Ten of us ladies joined in a sweat of purification and release of negative energies that no longer served each individual person.  It was both similar yet in high contrast to the Lakota Sweat we had participated in the night before the first wedding.  This one was very feminine in nature both because it was all women in attendance, but because of how it was led and presented.  It was personal and beautiful and I was honored to share the space with the others in attendance.

This event was followed by a quick trip back to our rooms to shower and get ready for the welcome dinner that the bride and groom arranged for the entire group.  An entire restaurant was shut down and catered only to our raucous group. More great food  with great toasts from the family was just the perfect topping for a wonderful smorgasbord of a day.

welcome dinner toast

More on the wedding in a day or so.

Love Sally

 

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