I had never felt so small, in the moments I sat and looked down towards the trees and pyramids surrounding me. Where I sat was the top of The Masks Temple, it was a gift from the king Jasaw Chan K’awiil I in honor of his queen Lady Kalajuun Une’ Mo’. The Mayans had slept, eaten, worked and celebrated in the areas below. They lived and served their purpose in their society and brought us the magnificent temples. Each temple made from the same stone but each unique in design. The temples were beautiful, the view from up above was mesmerizing. Unfortunately we would never know the true creators by name; those who cut, moved, and placed the stone or those who fed the workers. All I could do, was to appreciate what they had left behind.

Just like the non-royal Mayans, my specific contributions to society may not be known for years after my passing. I may be apart of something great or not, my name may make a mark on human kind or not. I can live trying to be known or I can live for these moments when I am at peace, appreciating the beauty around me, contemplating the arts, and enjoying life.

– Melanie Gonzalez (Student)