Many travelers to Yucatán are familiar with the town of Oxkutzcab, noted for its busy citrus market as well as its imposing 18th century church and colorful altarpiece.
On either side going up are traditional thatched Maya houses whose residents use the ramp for access.
Emblazoned over the doorway of the simple baroque facade is a rare colonial survival—a relief of the Spanish imperial insignia, crudely inscribed with the date 1697, with its twin pillars and the double headed Hapsburg eagle.
Inside the chapel, a simple blue altar frames the image of the Virgin of Pilar perched precariously on her pillar, and nearby, a venerable painted wooden cross, dressed in traditional Yucatecan style with an elaborately embroidered cloth recuerdo.
text © 2016 Richard D. Perry. 1980s images © by the author