September 26, 2022
Childhood Dream to Visit Machu Picchu in Peru
Machu Picchu, Peru – “Old Peak or Old Mountain”
Christina Schessler, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, a Senior Architect who has been with McKinley since 2004, recently experienced a once-in-a-lifetime journey. In her own words, here is what she experienced:
“It’s rare in life to have an opportunity to achieve a childhood dream. Starting about 10 years old, I was obsessed with Machu Picchu in Peru. I built models of the city out of mud, Paper mâché, wood and finally in college, clay. The college model is the only one to receive an “A” and the only one not destroyed by my brother with a bombardment of marbles or firecrackers. Much to my dismay, he took the Spanish invasion of South America to a whole new plane. Undeterred by my brothers lack of appreciation for anything artistic, I continued my study of historic and ancient architecture well into adulthood. I made it through architecture school, which is no small feat, became licensed and started on my profession journey. Machu Picchu was relegated to the back of my mind while I pursued a commitment to creating architecture and public spaces.
By good fortune, friends invited us on a trip to Argentina to visit their son studying abroad.
*💡Light Bulb Moment* Argentina is next to Peru!
All of a sudden I was daydreaming about standing on the mountain overlooking one of the most amazing natural/human made places on earth – I was already there by the time we made reservations. Machu Picchu is an engineering masterpiece created before the wheel or iron tools. A site of ritual spaces and temples: stonework with no mortar, more than 600 carefully assembled layered terraces to keep the city on the mountain, 170 buildings, thousands of steps, 16 fountains and 12 acres of farming area. Hydraulic engineers built a half mile long water delivery system for agricultural & human use. As worshippers of nature and science, the entire Inca civilization considered this location naturally sacred and its primary occupants were considered religious royalty.
After an exciting bus ride, I was not disappointed.”