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Published: December 28th 2009
Starting OutHiking, Bugs, the 3 Secrets to Life
Starting out the hike, in full gear with water, boots, and machete.
1. Hiking Cerro Pelon
2. Scorpion Bites and Tarantulas
3. Community Activities: Soccer, Church, Politics. 1. Hiking Cerro Pelon
We live in a valley surrounded by rolling hills and mountains. Of all, the tallest mountain, Cerro Pelon, looms in the distance and has a mystical quality to the people here. It’s the only one with a name, and the only one that people hike up just for the sake of reaching the top. Naturally, it topped our to do list and we gathered a group of people early on in our time here. We were a group of 8, 4 Gringos, 2 Salvedoreno friends about our age, and 2 13 year olds. It was 2 ½ hours to the top from our house, and we crossed rivers, streams, and Milpas (corn and bean fields) to reach the summit. (On a side note, I walked with a machete to try to fit in. Most men here walk with machetes to clear paths and protect themselves from angry dogs and drunks.) From up there, the view was incredible. In all directions, as far as the eye could see, was puro campo. Nothing
but nature and rural farm lands. We couldn’t even see the 1 paved road that comes in the vicinity. And the following thought was the most spectacular. From the top we could see everything that was the entire lives of these people: homes, families, friends, jobs, fun, etc. And in that panorama that encompassed there entire lives, there were no roads, machines, electricity, commercialism, just pure life in its finest. Never in my life, has my entire life been so removed from the larger world at hand. Anyway, enjoy the pics, everything you see is our life here, and we have nothing more than what you see. 2. Scorpion Bites and Tarantulas
During our 2nd week here, Cala (the girl from the other couple) was stung by a scorpion. It happened in the middle of the night, while we were all sleeping. Becky and I awoke to some rumbling/commotion from the other room and Bela (the dude) was carrying her out to the living area. We got out of bed to help and learn she had suffered a sting. Within 5 minutes, her entire body was numb and paralyzed, but she was still able to breathe, talk
View From Cerro Pelon
Here it is, our life sans machines.
(with difficulty), and move/close her eyes. After 5 hours, feeling started to come back slowly with pins and needles and lots and lots of saliva. And for the following 24 hours she had symptoms of a real bad achy flu: with nausea, aches, and a racing heart. But, a day and half later, all was well.
As for tarantulas, I saw the biggest tarantula I could imagine in a house one day. The body was the size of my palm, and including legs it was as big as my fist. It was hairy and super cool. A few weeks later, Becky found a baby tarantula living in one of our storage boxes in our room. At first we were gonna get rid of it, but it was a cute baby and it eats bugs, so we let it stay. And every night we’d come back and make sure it was safe. And there it was, our very own charlotte, hiding out in the box. Alas, since returning from Mexico we have yet to see it again. 3. Community Activities: Soccer, Church, Politics.
There are basically 3 community activities here, and every community is active in all
Sword Fights with weeds
Javier and I in a battle of the Weeds.
of them. Church on Sunday, political meetings, and soccer. 1) Church:
there’s no priest or pasture; its really just community reflecting. For example, one Sunday they had a community exercise where everyone spoke about there feelings regarding women’s rights and changes they’ve seen in their lifetime. Another day they had an exercise where all couples threw away the ‘negativity and tension’ in their relationships. It’s a pretty neat hippie approach to religion which I find interesting. 2) Politics:
the people here are super organized and vocal about there rights and the need to be involved in politics in order to sustain them. This has been the case since the civil war ended in 1992. And no matter how far into the campo they might be, every community and individual is very organized in and vocal about local and national politics. And this is despite being removed from electricity, internet, even news papers are hard to come by less someone goes into town (45 min hike up, 30 min. bus ride which comes every 2 hours). But people have radios with rechargeable batteries or on their cell phones (I still don’t know where most people charge them) and they
Becky and I
here we are, soaking up everything Cerro Pelon has to offer.
know what’s up. 3) Soccer:
Every evening some team is playing soccer on the field, and every Sunday they travel for games. Its pretty awesome and they´re also all disgusting (at playing). Everyone who plays has played 3-4x/week since they were 6 years old. And since they work in the fields all day, they´re in ridiculous shape and run circles around me.
Tot: 0.065s; Tpl: 0.016s; cc: 10; qc: 51; dbt: 0.0103s; 1; m:saturn w:www (220.127.116.11); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.4mb