Monday Monochrome

In the mercado of downtown Merida.

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The Sunday Traveler ~ Dzibilchaltun

In Yucatán there are words and names of places that do not roll easily off the tongue. Dzibilchaltun is one of them. A Maya archeological site of ruins about ten miles north of Merida, the state capital.

The main structure, that shown above, is the Temple of Seven Dolls, found on site when the temple was discovered under the ruins of a later pyramid being excavated by archeologists in the 1950’s.

During the vernal equinox the site is crowded with people to see the sunrise that comes directly on center through the doorway. It is not certain that the temple’s construction was done with this in mind.

Certain other things did catch my eye as far as the way things were laid out, such as this monolith that seems to be aligned with the temple’s doorway. Was this of significance? It wasn’t explained out on the grounds in the form of any plaques or signage of any kind. There is a museum at the entrance/exit of the site that might have provided more information, but it was closed at the time of my visit due to COVID restrictions.

There were a few more crumbling pieces of ruins on this site, but this piece of a 16th century Spanish church built after the conquest was by far the largest still standing here at Dzibilchaltun after the temple itself.

A small site of ruins in Yucatán off the beaten path, and I have to wonder how many more such as this remain undiscovered.

More from Yucatán coming up soon. Until then, travel on.

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Words on Wednesday

It’s autumn. At last. In Northern California. Just in time for Thanksgiving.

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The Sunday Traveler’s Monday Milagro

The Monday morning milagro (miracle). I’ve sat myself down at my desk to post something here at last. Several weeks of travel, of being foot loose and fancy free, of having not a care or worry except booking flights and navigating airports; but now it’s time to settle in and take time to edit and post photos and words. As the days have grown colder and shorter, it’s the perfect time to be inside, to be home and get all of this down. I spent some time thinking about where I should start here on the blog; the beginning seemed like the obvious choice. So, Merida, Mexico it is. The beginning of this latest travel orgy.

The lead photo is in the little town of Kimbila, close to Merida. The main mode of transportation in most little towns around Merida are bicycles, but even more so the motorcycle. And a fantastic invention called a MotoTaxi that are used by everyone to get anywhere and everywhere.

And there you have it; a MotoTaxi ready to take this shopper to her next shopping place, or home, or to visit someone in the next town. I was absolutely fascinated by this. And, yes, I did get to eventually ride in one (coming up in another post), and it was more fun than being on a ride at Disneyland. It’s simply a motorcycle with a little house built on top of it; very practical to protect from rain and the blistering sun.

I’m slowly pulling photos together, and much more will be forthcoming.

Hasta luego.

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The Sunday Traveler ~ Travel Days

Not content with one trip to Merida, Mexico for two weeks, I returned, and four days later got in a car with my partner and headed from home in Northern California towards Vancouver, Washington. In spite of being just a wee bit tired, I’m elated at the incredible amount of new and beautiful things I have seen over the last three weeks.

I’ve been all over Mexico before, but Merida, in Yucatán, was a first. I have a wonderful cousin there who is an excellent tour guide, and took me out to explore every single day of the two weeks I was there. I have to say, that while I saw so many fabulous things and places, the cenotes were something that took my breath away.

We went out on an all day trip to spend the day in a location that had three cenotes on site. The photo above is just one, but the most impressive in my opinion. It’s hot inside, but the water is cool. To access the cenotes you descend via stairs into the cave and wind down until you get to the water.

I have stories and so many photos that will follow here in the weeks to come. But now, it’s on to the Pacific Northwest.

The photo above is the Columbia River in Vancouver, Washington. A car trip of six days that I just returned from yesterday afternoon. And now I prepare to leave for a family reunion in Mexico City next Monday. This all seems like a wild dream, but I’m loving it. Stay tuned for more very soon.

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The Sunday Traveler ~ Getting Ready To Go

It begins in earnest.

First: Showing everyone where it is you’re so excited about going to because they’ve never heard of it, maybe heard about it somewhere a long time ago, or heard of it but don’t know where it is.

Merida. In Yucatán, Mexico. I’m headed there this Wednesday for two weeks, staying with family.

I’ve traveled around Mexico all my life, but have never been to Merida, and I am beyond thrilled to have this opportunity. I will be back with a lot of photos and stories to tell.

Until then.

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The Sunday Traveler ~ The Waiting Game

A weekend in Santa Cruz in Northern California brought me front and center with the surfing scene; and as I watched the surfers, particularly this one young woman, I thought about how similar waiting for the right wave in the ocean is much like waiting for the right wave in life. You hang on, you watch, and you size up the right wave to jump on to ride in and just enjoy the ride. I realized I’ve been doing that for the last several years, the waiting. Sizing things up. Is it a good enough wave?

And then I decide. Yes. I decide if not now, when?

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The Sunday Traveler ~ It’s Always Something

So it was off to Arizona I went, twice actually, to visit family over the last couple of years. In continual awe at the sunsets of the desert that I had never witnessed. So many new sights in the last couple of years, with more to come soon. Travel is on the agenda once again and I’ll be gearing up for the first trip in a couple of weeks. The Costa Rica trip I posted about last week was really the trip that helped reorient my brain to the rigors of travel; one really gets out of travel shape after an extended lapse.

Forgive that empty block, challenges this morning getting photos over to the new laptop. It’s always something!

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The Sunday Traveler ~ Costa Rica

May of this year found the Sunday Traveler hitching a ride with my friend to Costa Rica for his daughter’s destination wedding. I’d never been to this part of the world, so how could I pass up this opportunity?

The wedding guests all stayed at an Air B&B selected by the bride to be, and this provided a fantastic setting for families and friends to relax and get to know each other for a couple of days prior to the wedding. The home was a huge tri-level set on the edge of the jungle with a couple of swimming pools. We were in Quepos, and did spend one day hiking in the jungle of Manuel Antonio National Park that was bordered on one end by the ocean, your prize for hiking through the hot and humid trails of the park.

Back at the house everyone melted into the pool. The days were filled with talk, laughter and food. Lots of food, prepared by a chef that was on hand with the Air B&B services. This was a rather hedonistic getaway for me. The rains held off until the afternoon of the wedding, but it all added to the story that this wedding day will have for the newly married couple. We had seen monkeys swinging by in the trees surrounding our property, but one decided to make a personal appearance right as the wedding ceremony began; he was quickly shooed away by the officiant.

We returned to San Jose from Quepos, about three hours away, for an overnight there prior to our morning flight home. A chance for one more sunset.

A very short trip of three days, but worth every bit of time we had there to see another little slice of the world previously unknown to me.

Until next time, my friends. and as they say in Costa Rica, Pura Vida!

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The Sunday Traveler’s Comings and Goings

One year. I fell down a rabbit hole and just found my way back up to the top again. A lot happens in a year’s time, and I’m glad to see that a lot of my old friends are still here. I’m figuring things out again here on WordPress, on a new laptop I just got yesterday to motivate me to write again. And show my photos here again, too. I’ve done a little bit of travel since things opened up post pandemic shut downs, that has felt wonderful; and I always thought how I should be posting about those travels here. More trips are on the near horizon which has pushed me to get back in the saddle. I’m opening the gate to all the good things coming my way, and I hope you’ll join me again.

Let’s go.