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El Rancho de Los Amigos

June 14, 2011

¿Que tal, Yellow Jacket fans?


Week 5 was yet another incredible week in Mexico, but this time most of it was outside of the Distrito Federal. We spent half a week at “El Rancho de Los Amigos” in Sontacomapan in Veracruz.

Sunrise on the top of the mountain

The ranch sits on the edge of a lake that runs into the Gulf of Mexico (you could see both from the ranch). We went, in part to relax and have fun, but also to learn about permaculture- which is a type a well rounded sustainability.

In addition to spending hours on the beach and in the kayaks, we got to experience a temezcal. The temezcal is a Mexica ritual for a mind and body cleansing. You sit inside of a tent at sundown with a hole in the middle. Inside the whole you put lava rocks that have been heated in the fire and pour mineral water on them. Imagine a sauna, but ten times

Sunset on the mountain

hotter. Not only is it hotter, the ritual last about 45 minutes. It is really a mental challenge to stay in the heat for so long, but it is made easier by the chants and meditation times.

Another Mexica ritual we learned was their dance. It wasn’t as structured as I though it would be though. The leader blind folded all of us and told us to listen to our bodies. He and the owner of the ranch then played the drums wit the music, which was a unique addition to the recorded music. Most of us thought it was really fun, despite the lack of structure. I don’t know which I liked more, though, salsa or Mexica dance…

On our nine hour bus trip home we went to a small town called Contamoco, which has a lot of markets and cheap shops. It was so nice to walk around and see something other than a bus window. Plus, I was able to buy some delicious coffee beans to bring back with me.

Wagner and friends on the way to the beach

As great as the weekend was, it makes it even harder to believe that I leave for Peru in a week. However, I know this last week has some great stuff in store, as does my next chapter in Peru!

Hasta Luego!

Glenn Travis Wagner
Men’s Swimming and Diving, 2011


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