For those of you out there who liked Day 8 and 9, good news; Day 10 was another pyramid day!
This time, we went to Uxmal (pronounced like Oosh-Mal).
As soon as we got there, I noticed yet another No Enrico sign and felt unwanted.
But I went in anyway. First, we went into the little museum that was at the site.
Yes, that last one is another penis statue.
Then we looked around the ruins. I really liked the ruins of Uxmal.
Probably the most important building at the site is a pyramid called the Adivino. It's pretty huge. Can you spot me sitting next to it??
There is a legend about the creation of this pyramid (I read the legend, "El Enano de Uxmal" in Spanish class), that says that the pyramid was build overnight. I wonder if it's true...
See that stone in the middle? Well that represents the 5th cardinal direction according to the Mayans. They had N, S, E, W and this direction, which led to the underworld.
When we went to enter one building, we found a brown blob in front of it.
And realized it was a guard dog. Aww.
On Day 9 I learned that the Mayans had an interesting view on the shape of the ears of their Gods (I just can't word that sentence right, sorry). Well on Day 10, we saw that their thinking applied to the nose as well, as they believed one of the Gods (something about rain) has a nose like this:
I don't think elephants were around in Mexico at the time these buildings were erected, so I think this just came from their imaginations. The direction of the nose indicated a need for rain, or a request to stop the rain.
Some faces were missing noses (you can see how easy it'd be for them to fall off).
While looking at the noses, someone in my group realized this lizard lounging about a few feet away.
In this one place, we saw carvings that retold the legend of el enano de Uxmal.
Here's the enano himself (with a turtle shell in front of him)!
And I thought this was an owl (part of the story) but it is actually just a design where some rocks fell out, which makes it look like it has wings....
And this is one of the men who helped build the pyramid overnight. Some kind of forest fairy or something.
Then we saw another iguana!
And realized that the site was infested with them....
Here's a Mayan handprint.
And the ballcourt was at this site too.
We climbed the tallest pyramid that you're allowed to climb in Uxmal (you're not allowed to climb the Adivino)
and could see our hotel from the top of the pyramid! See that orange building all the way to the left? That's it.
At the top, we found this seat, which people sat on when they were about to be sacrificed.
Now, sacrifice was an interesting topic in Mexico. While many of the residents and other guides said that the Mayans practiced human sacrifice, our own National Geographic guide swore that there were no human sacrifices in the Mayan civilization. He gave us evidence why and told us that there was no evidence that supported sacrifice, just assumptions that were never proved. So who knows....
Anyway, so then Zach pushed Liz off the pyramid.
And Lindsay, Lauren, Katie and Carol jumped off to avoid being pushed.
But Zach did push Pepe (my teacher). He managed to hang on.
And while all this happened, I just posed for a picture.
Then I climbed down in about 18 seconds while everyone else took their time.
Then a bunch of us got Magnum ice cream.
I didn't have any, but I love the advertisement! That girl looks SO thrilled to be eating Magnum ice cream!
After Uxmal, we headed to another site, Kabah.
We were only here for a second, but the thing we all remembered was the name of the main building: Codz-Poop.
Look how small the stairs are!
Then we went to Labná.
Where we saw the type of shelter we would be staying in the next day....
While walking about, I noticed an orange tree. Our guide said we could actually eat an orange from it... if we could get a ripe one down.
So I attacked the ripe oranges with a stick and was the first one to successfully get an orange!
Then the guide told me to bash it against the stairs to get all the juice flowing. I was hitting it lightly at first and he said, "No, hit it like it's your girlfriend."
Eventually, he cut open the top so I could drink the juice.
And everyone laughed when I stopped drinking and made a face. It was so sour!
But I ate it anyway. I guess my report turned everyone off, as I was the only one who got an orange down for consumption.
After visiting THREE sites in one day, we headed back to the hotel for some R&R.
Here's the view of the pool from my balcony.
When we all headed down to swim, we saw this amazing sign.
The chairs were very comfortable and made of stone (who came up with that idea?!)
In the pool we swam and played water volleyball.
That night, we returned to Uxmal for the Festival of Luz y Sonido, or Light and Sound.
Basically, we sat on the steps of the big pyramid and watched as the other pyramids lit up in different colors. The whole time, this recording played that talked about the former residents of Uxmal and the way they lived.
When we got back to the hotel, I noticed something on the ceiling.
So I zoomed in, and saw this.
Aww. So many cute creatures in Mexico!