Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Peace Rider from Kaua, Yucatan 1/1/13

Hi Lois,

This to you will also go out on the blog for everyone else following these postings.  I trust you will circulate this to a wider circle of Friends.

A few highlights from my time with the Maya.  At the moment I´m sitting in an Internet cafe in the small. rural community of Kaua on the road to Chichen Itza west of here.  The Itza part gets dropped by the locals.  Kids are on a computer to my left sucked in to a world of virtual reality.  It´s a bit more subdued to my right but the volume of noise in here is increasing.  Will see if I can make it through to the end. 

I´m  now staying with the Sixto Maxon family a kilometer in the other direction from town.  Sixton is the uncle of Gabriel whom I stayed with in the community of Muuchximbal, roughly two days of cycling southeast of here outside of Tulum.  From the day the world as we know it came to an end (12/21) until now I´ve been more off the road than on.  But it´s been just a wonderful experience of other ways of being and living.  Both of these families live close to the earth and most of the time directly on it.  Kids, cats, four, two month old puppies, an adult smallish dog, and the three remaining young pullets run in and out of Sixton´s casa maya at will.  It´s a hard scrabble life for the animals who eat scraps off the floor and are sometimes encouraged to leave with hard swat from a fly swatter.  But for all that they are not the scrawny ill treated creatures I have seen elsewhere in my travels.  Sixto´s younger wife Araselli loves having the animals around.  And as she said to me the work is hard but she loves it, the making of tortillas, cooking over a wood fire set between three large rocks.  She uses a flat plate to cook the corn massa for tortillas which in turn rests on a metal grate suspended over the fire.  This was the traditional way of cooking.  Before metal it was a thin fire resistant stone Sixton told me.  He works at Chichen having something to do with archaeology and anthropology.  My Spanish and understanding of it is improving but still missing some and mangling others as I speak.  But the effort seems to be appreciated. 

For those of you who have not visited this part of the world before, I am now in the State of Yucatan, I was in Quintana Roo east of here.  There is no surface water, it´s all underground but appears at the surface in cenotes or sink holes in this very porous limesstone.  Most of the original forest is gone and what remain is in parks.  Gabriel has a lovely little cenote near his place, and Sixto has one on his land.  This part of the Yucatan has a bit more top soil but it´s quite shallow where Gabriel lives.  I had to put stones on all my stakes to hold my tent down there but not a Sixton´s.

Well, I´m not going to quite make it to the end so will have to break off here and continue tomorrow when sometime maybe I can hit the road again.  It´s heading toward dark now at 5:30 and I don´t want to be on the road after dark with cars roaring by.  Fortunately, not far to go and there´s a wide shoulder just out side town. 

Don Peace Rider

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