Friday, June 17, 2011

Mission Report - Mexico

Yet another secret agent mission - this time I land deep in the sprawling metropolis that is Mexico City, under the cover of darkness, shrouded by the throng of its 20 million inhabitants I am to execute one of the most demanding covert operations to date. My mission objective is expressly clear: seek and capture evidence of the existence of the elusive and revered Mexican deity. Worshipped by the select elite upper echelon of society; was it simply a myth, or was there a much deeper conspiratorial truth to uncover.  

After ordering what was described as a ‘not so traditional’ caesar salad for dinner the previous evening, I set out early the next morning in search of my first clues. The mystical Mexican deity is said to be descended from the Aztecs, as such my investigations lead me to the sacred sight of the pyramids of Teotihuacàn.

However, before I get there, I am told by the local Mexicans that I should visit the Plaza de las Tres Culturas. It is in this plaza in Mexico City that reflects Mexico’s historical phases being prehispanic (Aztec), colonial (Spanish) and contemporary periods all in the one location.  It is here that I am told that I need to consult the wisdom and guidance of Mexico’s most famous cactus plant. I am having instant flashbacks to the 80’s, similar to a scene involving three Mexican amigos and I am sure that ‘el cactus’ has begun to sing to me.  Not certain whether the strange plaza was playing tricks with me, or whether it was the traditional margarita and not so traditional caesar of the night before. Irrespective I forge on with my search.

Singing Cactus

Aztec Lovers
I stumble across the gruesome remains of some ancient Aztec lovers at the site, who are decidedly taller compared to the current stature of the Mexican people. Secret scrolls uncovered with the remains refer to the mysterious deity, prized and cherished by the Aztec people. This was the first piece of documented evidence that verified the existence of the deity. An interesting revelation, however, indicates that the Mexican deity was in fact, far smaller than the Aztec people themselves.

I am eager to get to the pyramids, although I am once again diverted and led to the world’s third most visited religious site in Basilica de Guadalupe (Our Lady of Gudalupe’s Shrine). There I witness the strange and ever so slow practice of pilgrams making their way to the entrance of the shrine by inching forward taking each step by walking on their knees. It also at this site where I learn that the Pope Mobile, one of which is permanently on display, is equipped with a white seatbelt - interesting. Whilst this was all very fascinating, I felt no closer to discovering further information of where I could locate the revered Mexican idol.

Pope Mobile
Finally I found myself on the road to northeast to Teotihuacàn, 48 km from Mexico City. Teotihuacàn is the striking ceremonial site and the city was given its name by the Aztecs a century after its fall. It is termed as the “birthplace of the gods”. Surely it will be here that I will uncover crucial substantiation.

The central avenue, “Avenue of the Dead”, is flanked by the impressive Pyramid of the Sun (the third largest pyramid in the world), and smaller Pyramid of the Moon. I climbed each of the pyramids in search of enlightenment and additional proof, of what was now proven to be a small god.

Pyramid of the Moon
Word of warning – attempting to climb ancient pyramids with large steep steps is best accomplished not wearing tight skinny jeans, but attire that has more flexibility and stretch. Nevertheless, the visit to the scared sight had been fruitful. It was here that I stumbled across evidence that living decedents of the miniature Mexican deity had survived the ages and was in existence in Mexico City.
Palace of Fine Arts
Days later, I was searching the streets of Mexico City when I stumbled upon a rooftop overlooking the Palace of Fine Arts. Sniper sight in hand, I scan the clogged arterials now knowing that the once ancient description of what I was looking for still remained accurate.

I climbed down from my perch, and combed the pedestrian malls which were swarming with people, where I was hoping to catch a glimpse. I stop for a cold Mexican beer to survey the evidence I had collected thus far when I noticed the strange comings and goings of a clown. Surrounded by two shady looking characters, I observed the clown and quickly realised that I could potential be very close to discovering the living version of the precious icon. Unfortunately though, the clown seemed to be unsettled by the ongoing ramblings of homeless person and disappeared down a side street.

I had one final opportunity, and so I headed to the open air Citadel Market, full of all things Mexican. Surely it would be here that I would locate the elusive creature. I snake each market isle systematically, scanning every stall as I went by.  Hope, though, was fading fast, together with the daylight. My fast approaching departure for the airport was bringing with it an impending sadness.

No, I had not found it. To my utter bitter disappointment I had failed!

I failed to capture evidence of the existence of the highly prized handbag accessory that is the Mexican Chihuahua.

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