Monday, July 30, 2012

Life at Log Cabins

Who was dumb enough to give me a machete?

What can I say about Log Cabins?  Well, it sure is luxurious.  I say this with sarcasm.  It turns out, I’m paying a ridiculous amount for room, board and food.  Did I mention the mosquitos?  They’re charming.  The best thing about Log Cabins is the air conditioning in our room. 

Not all is bad at Log Cabins.  After all, it is really nice place; or at least the general atmosphere is lovely.  It’s a bit out of town, and perhaps inconvenient.  I won’t lie, I spent many a nights or days lounging my hammock reading one of Che Guevara memoirs.  Sometimes I’d mix it up and I’d write in my little pink book.  Some days we’d sit by the pool.  Other days we’d drink.  On one particular day, we chopped coconuts and drank them.  I can’t say I’ve ever done that.   So in that sense, Log Cabins gave me some life experience.  

The fruit of my labour...with some rum.
I did enjoy the scenery.  I would wake up to birds chirping and the sun flickering through the thick window shades.  I shared a cabin with MerryAnn and we were lucky enough to listen to a woodpecker every morning at 6 am outside our Cabin.  Palm trees everywhere, thick bush backing onto a small cluster of rainforest and wild dogs were always in vicinity.  We fed all of them.  Not particularly a good idea…our landlord was unimpressed. 

I’d also like to comment on the service.  We had a cleaning lady come in and someone do all our laundry.  Danny was our bartender and cook.  Every morning we had breakfast at 7 am.  Most of our nights there included pool parties and local rum.  The staff was good about letting us run the grounds to cater to our needs.  Except for the security guard.  He was a bit weird. 

 So life at Log Cabins was not bad, just expensive.  We found accommodations downtown and later in Kontiki for very cheap.  We were paying like 200 US a month once we moved out of the Cabins. 

Mind you, I have absolutely no regrets about leaving Log Cabins and moving into town.  Our new set up was way better.  

Peace and Love.

Jaguar Paw

I realize I haven’t written in over a month.  Time here escapes me.  I get caught up in doing so much and doing nothing that I find it hard to write.   When I was in Armenia, my friends and I met a few tour guides.  It just so happens that they work at a place called Jaguar Paw.  This is a tourist destination that allows you to zipline through tropical jungles and cave tube through flowing rivers in some of the darkest caves.  We naturally used this new connection to our advantage. 

The one thing about Belize that everyone should know is:  if you’re white, you’re getting ripped off.
Great crew of people <3

I guess  I understand if you’ve got a week here and you don’t know any better, but living here, you realize there are ways to experience the best of Belize and still not spend everything you have. 
Zip-lining Jaguar Paw

The tour guides were kind enough to take us to Jaguar Paw free of charge.  All we had to do was get transportation there.  We found a van cab who gave us a sweet deal (something like 10 BZ dollars a person = 5 US a person). 

Fifteen of us piled into this van.  We had the windows down, the back door and truck open, and off we were on the well kept roads of Belize.  I’m being sarcastic when I say the roads are anything but outrageous.  By the time we got there, zip-lining was first.  It’s time I admit that I have a serious fear of heights.  The first drop is the highest, the second was the longest.  I made it since I’m writing this right now. 

The sky was clear and the day was hot, zipping through the tallest trees and through the green canopy was a surreal feeling.  By the time we reached the bottom, all of us were hungry and excited for cave tubing.

****side note**** there's a hilarious South Park episode about zip-lining.

Caving at its finest
After our meal and being in the company of great people,  we grabbed our helmets and tubes.  We walked a few miles to one of the cave entrances. The next thing I knew, there was a bottle of rum, some coke, and everyone was diving into the crystal clear water head first.  We splashed around and watched a few tours go through the cave, until we decided it was time for us to through as well.  The water was warm and the cave was dark.  Our headlights were the only lights flickering in the darkness against the walls.  We held onto each other or we were left behind to try and paddle through the cave.  By the end of it, we were staggering out of the cave with smiles on our faces. 

The entire day was exhausting but a lot of fun. 

Peace and Love <3

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Tattoos fulfill a need to inscribe the self as an individual. -Margo Demello

there she is...
Clearly impulsivity is a problem for me...I was walking home last night and decided I was getting a tattoo.

And now, I have a tattoo.

I guess I've always wanted one, I've been talking about getting one forever.  I don't think anyone actually thought I'd go through with it.  I didn't ever think I would do it either.  I honestly don't know what came over me.  Maybe it's a combination of creating myself and the need to find whatever I think is missing in my life.  

I guess the next question is why a peacock feather?  Those of you who know me well, know that I have a weird thing for hawks and an even odder adoration for peacocks.   Maybe it's all the colours, or maybe its the alluring feather, I really don't know.  Another think that I like about the feather, its associated with Hera.  Hera is the queen of the gods.  She is one of the most powerful woman in Greek mythology if you ask me.  (not only am I an archaeology student, also have a classicist minor) I also looked up the meanings.  These are the ones I liked best.  

Peacock feather:

Peacock feathers represent pride, and by extension, nobility and glory. Peacocks are also known to eat poisonous plants with no ill effects, making their feathers a symbol of incorruptibility and immortality.

Ancient Greek Meanings
In ancient Greece, the peacock was the patron bird of the goddess Hera. According to myth, she placed "eyes" on its feathers, symbolizing all-seeing knowledge and the wisdom of the heavens.

Hindu Meanings
Hindu mythology associates peacocks with the god Lakshmi. The feathers thus represent his qualities: kindness, patience and good fortune.

Buddhist Meanings
Buddhists associate peacock feathers with openness, since the birds display everything when they spread their tails. Buddhists also ascribe great meaning to the bird's diet of poisonous plants--the ability to thrive in the face of suffering.

- complements of:

Peace and Love!!

A little bit of archaeology on Burns Ave...


Quick recap: Burns Ave is one of the main streets in San Ignacio, the city I’m currently living in.  I guess they were working on the pipes and doing a ton of digging.  Mid-way through the project they found something spectacular.  They found complete pots.  Not just any pots, but late preclassic maya pots.  For those of you who don’t know this about me, I’m in archaeology.  The reason I came down here was to pursue something that would give me back the passion that I think I lost over the last 4 years.  And here it was.  Pots.  Things that I've only seen in pictures.  However, I missed the opportunity to dig with the archaeologists once they took over the construction site and dubbed it an archaeologtical site.  This is entirely my fault by the way, for not wanting to dig under the hot sun and partially because I didn’t know students could volunteer until it was too late.

After a couple of days of digging, another amazing discovery was uncovered: bones.  Now, they were certain they had stumbled across a burial site. 

Cleaning books with fellow classmates and Ryan
The wonderful thing about the burial is that it's average.  Completely average in the sense that it is a Mayan villiger.  An everyday person, just like me and you.  Unfortunetly, its a partial.  This could be due to the fact that a bulldozer and plow were tearing up the streets earlier.  We actually don't know.  The skull was missing.  

Another week or so passed by and more digging continued and more pots were discovered.  In wonderfully good shape.  Now, here’s the exiciting part.  Both of my favourite professors here are amazing archaeologists - it's been fantastic learning under them. 

Thanks to Sherri Gibbs, I had the privliage of cleaning and taking care of the remains that were uncovered!!!!  I also had the job of putting together the pottery shards and broken pieces of the pots with Jaime Awe.  

I am absolutely stoked to be working on this project.  

Meet Cayo =)

I did something impulsive.  I GOT A DOG.   He's the cutest little thing in the world.  His name is Cayo.  I decided to name him after the district I live in.  I thought the name was fitting- perhaps exotic in actuality.

Welcome to my family <3