Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Parents' visit: Cholula and Puebla

During my parents' visit (yes, a couple weeks ago) we took a tour to visit Cholula and Puebla, both in the state of Puebla.
Puebla is known, among other things, for its talavera pottery, la China Poblana, it's food (especially mole), and as the battle site of the unlikely victory against French forces on May 5 (Cinco de mayo) 1862 (note -- 5 de mayo is NOT Mexico's Independence Day).


view of Iztaccihuatl ("the sleeping woman") volanco on the
drive to Puebla

view of Iztaccihuatl (left, dormant) and Popocatepetl (right, active)
volancoes 

view of Iztaccihuatl 

In Cholula we visited the Great Pyramid of Cholula. It is the largest pyramid in the world but it looks like a hill or mountain because it has been covered with earth and grass. Like other pyramids in Mexico, the Great Pyramid was built in various phases, in successive layers. There are various tunnels that traverse the pyramid (dug during excavations), but they are now closed to the public. On top of the pyramid is a church, built by the Spaniards. To me, the most fascinating part was that if you clap in the courtyard area, a sound "echos" (though not an echo) back that sounds like a Quetzal bird. It was believed that it was the gods answering back. 




the "hill" is the covered pyramid



the separate walls indicate different constructions at different times 





clapping in front of the stone results in the Quetzal sound



From there, we visited Puebla -- the capital of the state of the same name. 
the Cathedral 


the Cathedral 


the Cathedral


































We saw the house of the China Poblana ("the Chinese Pueblan" -- neither Chinese or from Puebla)I've heard/seen various versions of the legend, it's something along the lines that a young girl from Indian was stolen and eventually ended up in Mexico (was sold? escaped by hiding in a barrel that was sent on a ship?), where she was first a servant (but more like a daughter?) and later married a Chinese man (contributing to the idea she was Chinese, though the term "chino" is often used as a generalization for Asian). She is credited (at least in legend) with the creation of the China poblana style of clothing -- a white blouse and colorful embroidered red and green skirt -- which has become a folkloric, national symbol of Mexico.


house of the China Poblana 

house of the China Poblana

statue of the China Poblana





Museum of the Revolution, home of Aquiles Serdán,
an opponent of Porfirio Diaz. Police assaulted the building
 and Serdán and his family fought back, until Aquiles was killed.


Talavera workshop  -- pottery Puebla is famous for 

talavera 


talavera 

talavera 

Church of Santo Domingo, Chapel del Rosario

Church of Santo Domingo, Chapel del Rosario

Church of Santo Domingo, Chapel del Rosario

Church of Santo Domingo

talavera in the Chapel del Rosario


talavera in the Chapel del Rosario

view from the outside of Church of Santo Domingo + Chapel del Rosario

3 comments:

  1. Wow! These are wonderful photos. I couldn’t find you on Twitter, but I tweeted a link so others would see them.

    Meanwhile, I’m glad you and your folks enjoyed your trip to Cholula and Puebla. If you find yourselves in the area again, please check out my blog, www.AllAboutPuebla.com.

    Good luck with your studies!

    All best,
    Rebecca

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  2. Thanks, Rebecca! (Do you get the Rebeca w/ one c all the time as well?) And thanks for the shout out on twitter!
    Love your blog!
    Saludos,
    Rebecca

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thanks for checking out my blog and following me on Twitter! I do get Rebeca with one C a lot, so now I just spell my name that way whenever my life is happening in Spanish. :-)

    ReplyDelete