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    The kingdom of Totonacapan, the Fat Chief & Conquistador alliance & the birthplace of my mother. Cempoala or Zempoala (Nahuatl Cēmpoalātl 'Plac… Read More
    The kingdom of Totonacapan, the Fat Chief & Conquistador alliance & the birthplace of my mother. Cempoala or Zempoala (Nahuatl Cēmpoalātl 'Place of Twenty Waters') is an important mesoamerican archaeological site located in the modern Ursulo Galvan Municipality, in the coast of state of Veracruz, Mexico. The word "Cēmpoalli" (from Nahuatl root "Cēmpoal) means twenty and "ā (tl)", means water, hence "twenty waters" perhaps because the city had a lot of aqueducts connected to Actopan River which provided the vital fluid to the numerous gardens and surrounding farmland fields and irrigation channels. The place was built by Totonacs and was the most important Totonac settlements during the postclassical mesoamerican period (1000 - 1521 AC) and the capital of the kingdom of Totonacapan occupied by the Totonac people. Cempoala was the Totonac capital and was occupied by totonacs, chinantecas and Zapotec becoming the largest city in the Gulf. In its apogee, had a population of between 25,000 and 30,000 people. It is located one kilometer from the shore of the Actopan River and six kilometres from the coast. El Cacique Gordo and Conquistador. In 1519, the city plays a crucial historical role to be the place where the chief Xicomecoatl, named by the Spanish chronicles as "El Cacique Gordo) The Fat Chief, forged on behalf of a nation indigenous mesoamerican an alliance with the spanish conquistadors led by Hernan Cortes to march against the rule of Tenochtitlan and the empire of Montezuma II. The birthplace of my mother. In our days Cempoala and nearby communities base their economy on fishing, trade and production of sugar cane, banana, avocado, corn and other tropical fruits like mango and guava. Thanks to the archeological site of ancient totonac capital city, tourism begins to gain height and this is vital for the development of the community. This region has a sentimental importance to me. Is the land where my mother was born and where every summer of my childhood Yuyi, my grandma, filled me with pampering and a legion of uncles & cousins bring unimaginable adventures for a city boy like swimming in a river, climbing trees and running in the sugar cane fields. Now, i'm 27 years old, I'm an man and I became seduced by the smell and taste of Totonacapan as when I was child. In the past, I believed that the melancholy and annoyance at having to leave the Totonacapan were caused by the obligation to return to Mexico City, my birthplace with whom I have irreconcilable differences but now I must return to Monterrey, a city that I love I give that I had the same feeling at the end of my trip and I understood that it was due to the warm treatment received from the sisters of my grandmother, grandfather and the rest of my mother's family. Certainly a part of me belongs to Totonacapan Capital City. Read Less
LOCATIONS. The modern village and archeological site of Cempoala and Playa Chachalacas.
Both located in Ursulo Galvan Municipality, Veracruz, Mexico.
PHOTO. Marco Guerrero for Altäir Arts
DATE. August 17-21, 2013.