January 2nd 1982

posted in: Innocents Abroad | 1
Chichen Itza

“Eight drummers drumming”  I made the error of not putting the fly-sheet on the tent, mainly because the ground was hard, + we’d had enough trouble getting one set of pegs in.  As a consequence, of course, we got a bit wet, from a heavy dew.  Nonetheless – up, a swift breakfast, + on to the ruins, about a mile’s walk.

The ruins at Chichen Itza are very extensive, so first off we bought a short guide – a pamphlet, I mean, not a midget – which rushed us for $80.  Ho hum, the price of knowledge… or, in this case, information.  The ruins were certainly impressive – we followed the route outlined in the book for a while, that being the most straightforward thing to do, + thanked our lucky stars that we’d made an early start.  As usual with such places, there was a good deal of walking, + many steep climbs up the sides of pyramids, + it didn’t take long for the sun to make its full effect known.  And, of course, if familiarity with Mexican ruins has not exactly bred in us a contempt of them, we are not so much in awe as at first.  By the time we moved on to the second half of the attractions, Val was by no means at her best, suffering in her back, neck + head, so we cut things a little short, + went back to the camp-site.

A gory detail

We hadn’t thought a lot of our site when we first arrived, but when we learned we had free access to the adjoining hotel’s pool, it went up considerably in our estimation.  We immediately made for that, + while Val sunned herself, I dived in… several times.  (I don’t much like must swimming, but I do enjoy jumping + diving in.)  After a while, I left Val to sleep her aches away, + went into the nearby village to buy some groceries – something of an effort, as what they have required seeking.  Then back to the pool for more diving.  I was also able to pick an orange + 3 grapefruit from the trees there – beautiful, sweet, pink-fleshed grapefruit.

In the evening, because of a better arrangement of the fire, we were able to cook much more efficiently, + then we spent some time talking to an American Mormon couple – rather too religious, but pleasant.

Temple fatigue definitely setting in, but we dutifully included it, and did our best to explore.  I was surprised to discover recently that Chichen Itza was included in at least one description of Seven still-existing wonders of the world, at the expense of,say, Angkor Wat, or Tikal, or one of the other temple complexes… matter of opinion, I suppose.

Apologies for mentioning, once again, my fondness for diving (tho’ nothing too high or dramatic) – clearly I do have a tendency to ramble on, and repeat myself..But the swimming pool was clearly a bonus, all the more welcome for being unexpected.

And once again, the delight of being able to cook outside – joyful when it is in good conditions, company, etc.

  1. Pamela J Blair

    I don’t remember Chitzen Itza (or as some people call it, Chicken Pizza) too well, except for climbing those incredibly steep stairs to the top of one pyramid. But I remember very well a cenote, where one had to climb down, once again, very steep stairs, so one could dive into a pool at the bottom. It was like a vertical cave–straight down. The Yucatan Peninsula has many, many cenotes, underwater caves. It’s like the entire peninsula is Swiss cheese! Can’t wait to learn where you o next.

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