Wolfe’s Woofers: Native Wisdom
Sunday, October 27th, 2013
My friend Richard lived here on the island for several years. He got a chance to buy some land over near the Belize/Guatemalan border. He fell in love with the mountains and the rain forest and has been trying to convince me to move over there.
“Well, what are we doing today?” I asked him after the first night of my visit.
Richard said, “Today we are going hiking in the jungle. Maybe we’ll see a jaguar or a tapir.”
“Do you think we’ll be safe?”
“I’ve been living in the jungle for over five years now,” he said. “I learned survival skills from the Maya. They know everything about it.”
We spent that morning hiking through little footpaths in the jungle. Sometimes we had to clear the way with machetes. I was getting really tired when Richard announced that we were near a road and that we would hike back to his house from the road. We reached the dirt track and there was a man, obviously a native Mayan, lying with his ear to the ground.
“Sh-h-h,” Richard said, as we approached him. “He seems to be listening for something.”
As we got closer I could hear the man mumbling.
“Ford pickup truck,” he said, then paused.
“Man driving and woman with baby in front,” he said before pausing again.
“Three children in back of truck. Truck is blue.”
I couldn’t hold back any longer.
“My God, man!” I said. “You can tell all of that just by putting your ear to the ground?”
“No,” he said. “The truck passed half an hour ago. It ran me over.”
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