Pyramid of the Moon
The pyramids in Mexico at Teotihuacan, about one hour outside of Mexico City, is very impressive. There are two main pyramids, one called the Pyramid of the Sun and the other the Pyramid of the Moon. Both were constructed between year 0-200 A.D.
But first a review of the afternoon yesterday. Having visited the centre at Ejercito Nacional, owned by the Mexico City YMCA and then later the YMCA University, we went to Mallorca YMCA Centre in the south of the city. Again we met crowds of the newly graduated Lideres from the ceremony at Camp Camohmila at the Mallorca YMCA, and they were eager to reconnect with us. We felt rather flattered being recognized by all these young people and quite overwhelmed by their warm enthusiasm! Here above it is the local Centre Manager, Kristina, Robert and Andrew that are overwhelmed.
Mallorca YMCA has a nice entrance, and behind the entrance is a huge YMCA with 15 tennis courts, swimming pools inside and outside, halls for rocket ball and basket, fitness and running tracks and of course a soccer field.
As we were walking around the centre we were constantly cheered by young people whom we had met during other occasions this week. A very friendly feeling!
Our guide, Kristina, is a swimmer and this is her second home!
Another interior from Mallorca YMCA, space and rooms enough, and filled with people and activities.
My turn to be overwhelmed by enthusiastic and very friendly young Lideres from the local YMCA. I can see a bright future for Mexico YMCA with all these young people, and I hope to see many of them as Change Agents in the near future!
A piece of modern art in the city centre of Mexico City. I like such exhibitions of art a lot, they make any city look so much better!
And here the performance which takes place at the parking lot at Teotihuacan. Five young men on the top of a 15 metres pole get off the top of the pole and swing slowly around until the ropes are bringing them down to mother earth again. Quite impressive! Let me show you one more photo to demonstrate how it looks as they are swirling to the grass down under.
We leave the swirling artists behind and dive into the hot Mexican sun and make progress towards the pyramids. In the middle of this huge construction there is the Avenue of the Dead which runs for 2 km from the Pyramid of the Moon to the Citadel and then continues south for a further 3 km.
Temple of Quetzalcoatl
One of the monsters at the Temple of Quetzalcoatl
The Pyramid of the Sun is 60 metres high, and used to have a temple on the top, destroyed by the visiting Spanish colonists. Originally the Pyramid consisted of four tiers standing on a square base measuring 200 m along each side, although today there are five levels due to the rebuilding carried out between 1905 and 1910.
It was tough going to reach the top, the steps were high and steep and the crowd was huge. We were let on to the pyramid only in limited groups, so we had to wait for a while in the hot sun.
We got to feel included in this huge Mexican fellowship up the steep stairs, and all ages were represented in this massive collective climb! It is exciting to think that in the 1970s they discovered a natural cave under the centre of the staircase with a tunnel that runs for almost 100 m into the centre of the Pyramid and ends in four chambers where various archaeological objects were found. I am always thinking of the excitement it must have given those who crept through that tunnel for the first time, not knowing what to find.
Ian and Ingunn at the top. Ian has bought himself a new hat today, and is very satisfied with the purchase. It also helps against the sun.
See the natural talents this group is displaying. I asked them to be desperately sad, maybe because they were just told that there is no menu in English.
Here they are serious, contemplating what to do in this very challenging situation. Thoughts are being tested and thrown out from these brilliant brains, and they are making progress towards a constructive solution.
Here we all remembered that both Kristina and Romulo understand Spanish, and the problem is solved!
After a solid lunch we go for a real adventure. I have been to Teotihuacan 7-8 years ago, and I was taken to a collective of 30 Mexican artists who were working with real precious stones. That time I bough a beautiful and scary scull made in green quarts, being a copy of a famous crystal scull of an Aztec Priest, a colleague of mine from 1490. I wanted to find this place, and after some investigations and with the help of our excellent driver Jorge, we really found this centre containing excellent and very genuine, high quality artifacts. We are welcomed by the manager, Jose, and he explains us how they make paper from the inside of the cactus.
Jose also shows us the raw material the artists are using to craft their beautiful art.
We are all excited by the centre, and Ian finds a fantastic figure of a dog and buys that while I find a funeral mask in green quarts, the same quarts my scull is crafted from, and I believe that the two artifacts will be good together. The mask below is not what I bought, but is somehow similar. My mask is already packed so well that I hate to unpack it. Maybe I will if you really want to see it 🙂
Another sun filled day is going into dusk as we drive out of beautiful Teotihuacan and leave the impressive and massive Pyramid of the Sun behind.
We cannot leave Teotihuacan without introducing you to some cactus, here a full garden of only cactus.
The sun is setting somewhere behind the Pyramid of the Sun. Yesterday night we were invited by Ernesto and his President and Vice President to Villa Maria, a famous restaurant in Mexico City. They treated us to a fantastic Mexican meal and to Mexican music and sing along and we were enjoying ourselves all evening. The Mexican YMCA hospitality is famous, and will not be less famous after our visit. Gracias, Mexico! And tomorrow we continue to explore the social and community centres of Mexico YMCA, so more tomorrow! Tuesday morning we are setting sail for Havana, Cuba.