From Alamosa, Colorado, we continued to drive South to cross border to New Mexico. We stopped at Aztec Ruins National Monument to check out the ruins.
I was stoked to be heading to New Mexico. I’ve always wanted to visit the state. Or, maybe, I secretly wanted to see if I would bump into Eoin Macken while they were filming The Night Shift. After all, it is the “Land of Enchantment”.
Upon arrival, I noticed that the parking lot was pretty much empty. In fact, it looked like it wasn’t even opened! We walked into the visitor’s center and were greeted by very friendly rangers. They lent us a book with all the information on each site that we would come across while walking through the ruins. Each site was numbered accordingly.
One of the perks of going to such a quiet place is that you literally can have the whole place to yourself. It really is a win-win situation.
Traveling has a way of opening up our brains and minds. Reading a history textbook may be the most boring thing to do, ever. However, when we are traveling, we suddenly want to know everything we see, touch, eat and smell. We become very curious people.
Since there weren’t a lot of people, I was able to read about each number before I went to see it. We came across a large circle, known as a kiva. A kiva or ceremonial chamber was used for medical and religious activities. Without the booklet, I imagined this circle to be a place where they fought.
Then, we moved on to exploring their interior rooms. Even though it was half destroyed, it was amazing to witness how small the rooms were back then. Each room accommodated 2-3 people. I can’t imagine living in such a small room, let alone I complain that I need a bigger room now! I am now very grateful to have a room bigger than this.
It was quite interesting because I realized every time we walked across the door, we would have to bend down, almost in a squat position and walk across. Were people really that small and short back then?
There was so much history in this place, I could feel it. I wanted to learn everything from what they did during their free time to how they showered. I learned so much about the ruins, more so than I did in my Grade 10 and 11 history class.
Next up is a place that I’ve been wanting to visit since I went to Arizona in 2012.