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Corey Leamon

Travel Stories: Mexico City Day 3.1 Teotihuacán

Posted by on 9/28/12 at 12:00am

A group of 6 LF’ers recently ventured down to Mexico City to enjoy the food, culture and the architecture. These are our stories in a four-part mini series.

Departing from more modern aspects of Mexico, three of us took the metro to the end of the line, jumped on a bus, and emerged over one hour later at a world treasure: Teotihuacán. Located 30 miles northeast of Mexico City, this ancient metropolis datin

g before the start of the Common Era once covered 12 square miles and contains no shortage of architectural importance. It displays pristine craft using local volcanic rock, quarried stone and plaster in a talud-tablero style. Each of the three pyramids (“la pirimida del sol” being the third highest pyramid in the world) is enshrined with purpose, from ritual function to placement over cenote. Narratives of the gods Tlaloc and Quetzacoatl travel around sacrificial burial chambers embedded in the walls. Conches talk about Mexico’s history of abundant water.

The orientation of the site, built around the main “avenida de los muertos”, caused our shadows to cascade mightily down the steps and into the crowds. At every turn, the light was treated with incredible care. A restored courtyard explored thresholds in and out of the powerful sun. Climbing over 300 steep steps revealed the world (and worldwide travelers) to us. Every moment traversing this enormous site was full of significance. Teotihuacán is truly a place where architecture is bred from purpose, power, culture, ritual and history – its population mysteriously disappeared, but what they left behind has become a timeless symbol of human ingenuity.

Next: Mexico City Day 3.2 Libraries