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Published: August 9th 2010
We arrived at Chaco Canyon in early July. My goals were to see some Native American graffiti and get my 3rd. Jr. Ranger badge. I set up camp and went to the visitor’s center to pick up the necessary paperwork. Went to the truck and made up some answers. Took the booklet back in and presented my answers. That is when I got the bad news: “Holiday, we are out of Junior Ranger badges.” It was a low point of the trip, but I was now on a first name basis with Lauren, so all was not lost. I had to plead the 5th. when she asked me where I saw the car and tv petroglyph. She was so much more experienced than Sherri (see the blog about my 1st. Jr. Ranger badge). So confident. So….. mature. Anyway, she got a good chuckle when she read my response to “Brain Teasers” number 2: Do you think the people in Pueblo Bonito could have communicated with the people from Casa Rinconada? How? My response was “Yes. Jumping up and down, waving their arms in the air and hollering real loud.” More on that later.
We took the short walk from the
visitor’s center to Una Vida and the pertoglyphs. The pertoglyphs are above Una Vida on the canyon walls. There were two couples ahead of me on the trail. They were maybe in their early 40’s. They were looking at three lizard type drawings (see photos) and one of the females said “Look, one of them doesn’t have a penis.” There was silence for what seemed to be forever. One of the men calmly stated “Those aren’t penises, they are tails.” Again, a long silence. Finally the female responds “Oh.” Strange.
The campground is nice, flush toilets but no showers or potable water. There is one place to get water. The visitor’s center has one faucet in the parking lot. No ice, no store, no services of any sort. The next morning we drove the loop and stopped at the parking lot to Pueblo Bonito, Chetro Keti, and Pueblo del Arroyo. My mother and wife took the walking tour. I was stuck in the truck with a “sick” (sleeping) granddaughter. By the time they returned it was getting hot and we still had to break camp and drive to Albuquerque. We decided to take a short nap before we left,
so I started the generator just so we could stay reasonably cool.
It was during this nap that I had a dream about my Brain Teaser answer. It went something like this: Two Native American males. Teens. One in Pueblo Bonito (Fred) and one in Casa Rinconada (Jeff). Imagine them jumping up and down, waving their arms in the air and hollering. .
Fred: “Hey Jeff, I got a new beau.”
Jeff: “What? A new bow?”
Fred: “Yeah, a new beau!”
(Beau is gender neutral in Chacoan Culture. An explanition will follow in the comments)Jeff : “Bring ‘er over!”
Fred: “No way. Get your own!”
Jeff: “I thought we were best friends.”
Fred: “We are, but get your own beau.”
Jeff: “How far can it shoot?”
Fred: “What? I can’t hear you. I going at 12. To meet her”
Jeff: “12 meters? What’s a meter?”
Fred then raises both hands above his head with palms facing inward to indicate that he doesn’t understand. He then turns and walks away. Jeff sees this, holds his hands out in front of him with palms facing inward, attempting to duplicate the distance between Fred’s palms. Finally satisfied with the attempt he nods
his head and mumbles “Oh, so that’s a meter.”
P.S. The badge arrived shortley after I returned home.
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