Sushu's Travel Journal

April 9, 2012

Trujillo

Filed under: Latin America — Tags: , — admin @ 1:06 pm

Made it to Chiclayo today after visiting two museums this morning. The first one was a small museum sponsored by the Trujillo archeology university. It was interesting but also showing its age a bit… the paint was starting to fade, etc. The other museum I was really excited to see… Museum Cassinelli is a private collection that is in the basement of a gas station but has tons of cool stuff. We tried to go the first day of getting to Trujillo, but it was mysteriously closed. Today, we went again and it remained closed. However, we noticed a sign on the museum door that announced some “poshumo ” event… and another newspaper interview from 2003 mentioned Cassinelli being 83, which would make him 92 this year…. so…. he might be dead? That might be why the museum is currently closed? :X

The ill-fated Cassinelli Museum:

Anyway, yesterday we went on a tour of the Moche temple of the moon and the Chimu palaces at Chan Chan.

The Moon Temple (Huaca de la Luna) is actually 5 temples stacked on top of each other. Every 100 years or so, they would completely bury the previous temple and build a new one on top. The Moche believed that temples had life cycles, as well.

So here’s excavation of temple 4 and temple 3:

Here’s some Moche pottery: (It’s not the best I saw, but many places prohibited photography.

The bricks were contributed by families who couldn’t pay taxes in any other way, so they put their family mark on the bricks:

Then we visited Chan-Chan, which had 10 giant palaces. We visited Palace Nik-An.

View of store-houses in the palace:

Follow the pelicans to find your way out of the storage maze:

This is a huge reservoir inside the Palace/Tomb. It’s somehow linked to the Moche River, and remains a pretty consistent water level:

I think I would prefer living as a Moche rather than a Chimu … the Chimu civilization was so advanced as to be able to support 10 mummy palaces (when a king died, his mummy retains political power and must be housed in giant tomb-palaces). The living people are kind or squeezed in between these palaces. Plus they sacrificed virgin girls aged 18-25 for various ritual occasions. The guide said that they had special virgins whose duty it would be to be sacrificed…. imagine being bred for ritual sacrifice! In comparison, the Moche only sacrificed a warrior every el nino season (once every 25 years or so), it’s part of a large competition, they get the loser high on cactus first, AND make a cool pottery showing his face. Human sa orifice is muy malo, but once every 25 years ain’t bad. But maybe I have a soft spot for the Moche because they made the coolest pottery. You should look up some better ones than what I took pictures of….they’re amazingly lifelike and natural.

The bus to Chiclayo was pretty awesome… it was double Decker, the seats were extra wide and cushy, and they leaned far back and there was even a leg rest. They played the empire of wolves, which is some French film thriller involving the Turkish mafia? And we also watched the beginning of The Darkest Hour, which is about an alien invasion where the survivors are some American schmucks in Moscow? The aliens were cool because they were invisible, electrically charged, and wanted to strip-mine earth. The humans were boring and generic.

Speaking of post-apocalyptic fiction, I’m finally making it to the end of 1491, and reading it has made me want to do post-apocalyptic historical fiction about the death and disintegration of native societies when hit by European diseases. But it’d have to be really well researched, and it’s really not my story to tell.

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