This past Sunday, my IFSA group and I visited Chichen Itza, the cenote of Yokdzonot, and Izamal. While I have been in Mexico, we have had the wonderful opportunity to visit many of the archaeological sites that the Yucatan has to offer. As a Latin American Studies minor and History major it is something else being able to see these existing pieces of history in real life. Maybe it’s the fact that these are actual pyramids or that I didn’t think they would be so large, but they are incredibly impressive. After visiting so many here, I want to visit Egypt to compare the structures of the two.
While I have been here, I attend classes at the University Autonomy of the Yucatan at the university of anthropology. I currently am in an archaeology class where we discuss and read about these pyramids. We learn about previous ideas and theories about the civilization that lived around these pyramids. We learn about the artifacts and the knowledge that we do have about the Mayans. In my Mexican Art history class we studied the murals, the ceramic pottery, and the sculptures that have been found at the archaeological sites. Being able to study here while also going on mini excursions to these pyramids has been a really great learning experience. In the states, I did learn about the pyramids as well, but we only covered them in general because we were learning about the history of Latin America and there are pyramids located in many different places around Latin America like Guatemala, Peru, and Bolivia.
I wasn’t excited that we had to wake up early and ride for almost two hours in a van to get to Chichen Itza, but once I was there all the information I have ever learned about the indigenous people of Latin America came flooding into my memory. I was so excited to share my information with my IFSA group and it made the experience even more worthwhile. Chichen Itza has to have been my favorite site to visit so far. Everything was on such a grand scale and I feel like none of my photos are able to do the site justice. My favorite part of visiting was exploring the grand stadium where the Mayans used to play their ball games. It was huge and it made me wish that I could go back in time in order to witness the splendor of this game first hand. The reason I probably loved Chichen Itza the most is because I felt like I could feel the splendor and richness of the people that once lived there.
This week is an off week for me, but in the following week we will be making a five day excursion to Chiapas. After that, my parents will be here for a visit during the first week of November. I have so many exciting things coming up, but my time here in Merida is quickly coming to an end. I only have a month and a half left to enjoy the beauty of the Yucatan. Hopefully, I can make it count!