The sounds of the jungle wakes you before dawn. In anticipation, you walk outside as the sun rises and breaks through the morning mist. Pairs of parrots fly above as the awesome sound of a howler monkey is heard in the distance. You're not alone, however, as everyone wakes up around early here. The descendents of the ancient Maya who built these fallen cities live all around them, many living just as their forefathers did. After breakfast you walk to the main acropolis. Before you a pyramid rises to meet the sun.

Temple 1 TikalIt's only 91 steps to the temple platform above. Yet the steps are pretty steep and the stones are wet. Besides, it's 95 degrees in the shade, the humidity is 100 %, and I perspire more then most. I smile at my wife Lee and start the dash up. I stop about 10 steps short to catch my breath. Twenty seconds later I'm at the top, the center of the Maya universe.

Steve & LeeBreathless I peer across the the tree tops. There are several nearby structures rising above the jungle canopy but shorter than this one. I wave down to Lee, she doesn't do them all. Wiping the sweat from my face, I reach for my flashlight and step inside. Entering the portal, I feel as though I've traveled thirteen hundred years into the past.

It's always been like this. Since 1983, I have walked these sacred grounds, climbed these steep steps, and touched these ancient stones. My wife, Lee, joined the adventure in 1995. Together we wish to share some of these journeys with you.