We think we have forever. But we don’t.
Mexico: warm, colorful, delicious food and friendly people. That was my idea of this country, and it took me a big climb to the top of their world to smell their true culture, to feel the sun on my shoulder and to stop and think about its history.
At the top of Coba’s pyramid in Mexico I took a deep breath and thought of the magnitude of this ancient civilization that has been gone for some 500 years. The jungle below us has renovated itself so many times during this long period of abandon, taking over with all its mighty slow growth. Its roots destroying the unused buildings that once were alive with social activities. Life replaces life in different ways in this planet, while some gets extinct, some grows here and there. Some will be gone forever hardly leaving traces of its existence, some will evolve through millions of years and continue to exist.
We took a taxi from our hotel passing by pueblos and their little homes, tiny stores and single-room restaurants along the road. Craftwork was for sale at almost every door, tropical fruits and fresh meat hanging from wires defined some places as grocery stores. Dogs sleeping under the shade of walls while children played around and adults were busy with daily work. Our taxi was going fast and my eyes were trying to capture every piece of that world that passed by our window. I wanted to walk on that land and smile in their language, I wanted to interact, but here and right now it was a one-sided communication only, where I talked to them but they never knew I was passing by.
Forty five minutes later we were at the gates of this area where tourists from all over the world gather to follow paths under skinny and tall tree canopies. For three hours I was lost, not in place but in curiosity, wandering and imagining what coud have been each building’s purpose when it was still a city. How this place had experienced rise and fall, how it had once become one of the biggest producers and merchants during their time. History teaches us so much if we only want to pay attention.
When exploring worlds and cultures I find myself asking not why they have disappeared, that matter we can learn from history, but why all of this greatness has not being dug and preserved? Why is it easier to spend money destroying villages,civilizations, cultural landmarks, destroying the environment, monuments, art and architecture, human life, animal and any type of life? While preserving and taking care of us would be way more uplifting? We know the answer…
History, art, architecture and nature, they only talk to those who listen. And to listen you need to have a heart.