When you go to Mineral de Pozos, a visit to the mines is a must so we decided on the Santa Brigida mines just 15 minutes away by car. The semi desert landscape here is beautiful with lots of cactus and vegetation dominating the now abandoned mines, that were once bustling with activity.

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The first reminder of the past are the three standing chimneys.

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Then you walk a bit further to visit the other abandoned buildings. That is when we saw this man.

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In normal circumstances, if I saw a man carrying a machete coming towards us I would be really afraid but somehow I didn’t feel threatened. When he came closer, he asked us if we knew we were in a private property and that we had to ask permission from whoever was in charge to visit the abandoned buildings. My husband apologized, said we didn’t now that and then asked to whom should we ask permission. He gave us a big smile with his few remaining teeth and said, to him, of course! Then we realized it was all in good fun.

He guided us a bit to show us the entrance to the mines. He told us he is the last miner alive. That he had gone through a lot in those mines. Looking at his aged face and body, it does seem possible. Such an incredible landscape, so beautiful! At the same time looking at that hole you can’t help thinking of the men who had to go down there and of the difficult conditions they worked in.

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The abandoned buildings now in ruins remind you of better times, while they slowly become one with nature.

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Just when we were about to leave we noticed something yellow by the side of the road. A group of butterflies was gathering. We don’t know why but it was really a poetic ending for this magical day…

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Welcome! Through my photography and my travels, you will discover the people I have encountered and the places that will stay with me forever. In this crazy new reality we seem to be living, it is even more important to be grateful for all the people who have crossed our path and touched us in same way. As for all the old and new stones, they can live in our imaginary for now, waiting, when the time is right again ...


  • Natalie says:

    Maria, I was just at the Santa Brigida mines a few weeks ago in October (2017). I saw this man! Sadly, I have very poor Spanish skills currently and I was unable to converse much with him, but I am almost positive it was the same person.

    I was looking for more information on the Santa Brigida mine and I’m surprised and tickled to find your post with this man’s picture in it.

    • Maria says:

      Dear Natalie,

      It does sounds like the same person and I’m very happy to know he is still there. I miss Mexico a lot and I still have good friends there whom I consider family. We had 5 wonderful years in Mexico and travelled extensively in the country which inspired a lot of my writing and photography. I enjoyed your blog post on Santa Brigida as well.

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