|That is a 700 year old skull. Denture work held.|
James showed us jungle plants that cause pain and remedies for illness. Everything is in the Jungle, then they chemically reproduce it and well...he tailed of. Case in point, I had no repellent so our boy grabbed the leaves of 3 plants and mixed them into a pulp in his massive Mayan hands. I spread it on my arms and legs and not only did I not get bitten, it is water proof and it smelt amazing, lemony. I did not ask how do you wash it off. Do not piss off the Jungle Guide.
Arriving at the cave entrance I was then asked "can you swim"? Odd time to ask our group of 5 intrepid spelunkers. First jump in the swimming hole to the left." But, but there are fish, lost of fish in the water" said a nervous 12 year. It was crystal clear and yes sir, there were fish, lots and lots of fish. "You have to get used to it came" the reply. I jumped in because as anyone knows, I am one with the fishes. Now James teaches jungle training to special forces in Colombia. When he says do it, it gets done. Make no mistake, he is not a drill Sargent and laughed and smiled quite often. You just did what he said because you know he had your back.. The tour is not cheap but worth the $85. You can pay up to $110 so Bargain, Bargain, Bargain.
|Entering the cave|
Entering the preserved area we needed to remove our shoes and climb up 15 feet of mud covered sloped rocks which was easy enough. The Mayan were kind enough to be thinking ahead 800 and provided us with an 10 foot aluminum ladder. Way to go Mayans!
Then the Mayan artifacts started to appear. Shards of, pottery, full bowls, skeleton bones and remains, human skulls. Tour ended with the viewing of what was described as a royal killing. On the way back we were challenged to tight spaces in neck deep water with rocks as hard as diamonds and as sharp as any known knife on the place. That gave you pause for thought. I can not do the experience justice and am thrilled that I participated.
We understand that the world is made up of different and interesting people. We all know that but are guilty (myself included) and not looking around once in a while. The website Humans of New York for example. Absolutely one of the most creative and intelligent website have come across. Get off FB and start following and you just might smile a bit more often. This is a must read daily. It is beautiful in its simplicity, as are most things.
Meet Anthony, a happy healthy and very chatty Belizian. Born to a Jamaican father and Mayan mother (yes Maya are still with us much like any native tribe in North America). Born and raised in Belize and happy for his station in life, I mean really happy. Here is a bit of his resume.
Cave tour guide / Business owner
Belizian Certified Archeological site guide
Jungle Survival guide
Military Jungle Survival trainer
His stories of being put in the jungle at 10 for 2 weeks, training the Colombian Military in Jungle Warfare against the FARC guerillas just mesmerized me. His knowledge of the Mayan Culture and this particular cave system was as impeccable as he was proud to know it, in minute detail. That is all I am going to share on his request.
Just when you think your a a man of the world, you realize you are not. Not even close. Thanks for the best life lessons possible on this trip James.