28 Jan Short stay visiting the Tula Pyramids
How many do you want?
As we arrive in Tula, we find a very nice, but affordable room, which we are calling home for the next couple days.
The plan is to go into town, grab something to eat and drink and have dinner and a nice relaxing evening on the rooftop terrace, which overlooks the city. The next day, we have reserved to visit the Tula Pyramid complex.
After stowing away our bikes in the garage/utility room and lugging all of our bags up to the 3rd floor, we head into town.
Most places have already closed. All we are left with is the choice between an expensive looking sit-down restaurant or a small family place that sells street food. From what we see, the family place has hand tossed tortillas and chicken. Also accoring to a sign placed in front of it, it looks like the place is selling enchiladas — perfect!
There are several chickens roasting over a fire and they smell delicious. We head over to the counter and order a total of 6 chicken enchiladas.
The people inside look at us with a puzzled look and ask …. „How many??”
”Six” we say and confirm that we are very hungry cyclists.
One of the cooks, tells us it is going to take a moment and goes on about his business.
After a few minutes, we watch as the family starts taking chickens off the skewers. The man looks at us and asks again: “How many?”
“Six”, we answer.
He shrugs his shoulders and proceeds to pull one chicken of the skewer. Then he chops it into pieces and puts it in a take-away box. We figured the meal must be for someone who has already ordered before us and think nothing of it.
After a short pause the man asks us if we want sauce. Thinking of having enchiladas, we thought it to be an unnecessary question……aren’t they always covered with sauce?
He proceeds to smother the chopped up chicken in an exuberant amount of sauce. Afterwards, he closes the lid and pushes the box off to the side.
He grabs the next chicken, chops it up, puts it into another box and looks at us and points to the sauce again, while another family member pulls another chicken off the skewer.
…….Horrified, we suddenly realized that somehow we did not order six chicken enchIladas. No, somehow, we managed to order six whole chickens, chopped up and smothered in sauce!
We quickly turn to the girl pulling off more chickens from the skewer, to please stop doing what she is doing.
Frantically, we point at the takeaway box and ask if that is our „Enchilada”.
He says, no it is not enchiladas, but yes indeed, it is our order and there are about four more boxes to come.
With our best Kindergarten-Spanish we try to apologize for the misunderstanding and hope that we do not have to buy 6 chickens chopped up into pieces.
The two that are already boxed up are more than even us two hungry cyclists can devour.
Luckily, the family, finds our mistake funny and we all get a good laugh out of the situation.
Happy to have noticed our mistake before it was too late, we pack up our two chopped up chickens and head back to the hotel terrace enjoy dinner up on the roof top.
Visiting The Tula Pyramid
We are looking forward to take a day off from cycling in Mexico. Well rested, we head out to visit the Tula Pyramid in the morning.
“Tula, also called Tollan, ancient capital of the Toltecs in Mexico, it was primarily important from approximately AD 850 to 1150. “~ Britannica.com
The complex consists of a five step pyramid temple, which was supposedly dedicated to the god Quetzalcóatl. Although this is one of the smaller ancient sites in Mexico, there are also two other temple pyramids, a palace complex and two ball courts.
The main pyramid was highly decorated. Although most of the colorful facade has eroded over time, there are still four columns in the form of warriors, each 15 ft high. Each is adorned with very specific body ornaments and accoutrements representative of the Tula style.
“In general, the art and architecture of Tula show a striking similarity to that of Tenochtitlán, the Aztec capital, and the artistic themes indicate a close approximation in religious ideology and behaviour. In fact, many scholars believe that the Aztecs’ concept of themselves as warrior-priests of the sun god was directly borrowed from the people of Tula.”~ Britannica.com
As we enter the geological site, we walk passed a few tables where locals sell souvenirs. Most stands, however, are empty and the whole area appears deserted. There are only a few more tourists moving about as we explore the site.
We walk through the ballfields and climb the steep stairs up to the top of the pyramid, where the 4 warrior statues look over the surrounding area. On top, we meet a swiss couple, who is traveling through Mexico in a small mobil home and we chat for a moment.
We take plenty of pictures and sit on top of the pyramid to take a rest. As we sit and check out the impressive statues, a couple with a very small infant climb up the stairs. Once they reach the top, they kneel in front of the statues. The man wears tribal head gear and carries a bundle of sage, some feathers and a rattle. After kneeling in front of the statues, he starts singing and cleansing the air. Apparently we are witnessing an ancient child blessing ceremony on top of the pyramid.
After a long day of sightseeing, we head back to our room. Once there, we check on our bikes, to make sure everything is in order, before heading out the next day.
Unfortunately, we discover, that we managed to pick up another piece of tire wire on our way here, which left us with another flat.
The two very helpful staff ladies were happy to help us out finding a small bike-shop with more patches, just down the road. They even give us rags and water to make it easier to find the air leak and to clean our bikes.
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