Central America | Guatemala | Central | Antigua – Another Belt of Power Installation
The magic word for today is hot. Here I am sitting right in the sun. I was thinking about getting a bit of a tan, but I think all that is going to happen is a ridiculous overheating. Ill move to the shade. There, that is much better. It sounded so romantic sitting in the sun, writing to nobody. Whoa, I just moved again, this time inside, where the concrete walls trap some of the coolness of the morning. It really isnt that hot. I was thinking of Belize and how hot it got there. Where the only thing I could do was be in the water or sleep. I remember in northern Guatemala, in Tikal, it was so hot that the best I could do was go from shade from one tree to shade from the next, resting and building up a little energy to brave the sun for just a few seconds more. It sat up there like a huge energy drain. It is strange that sometimes you can get energy from the sun, and sometimes it drains the energy right out of you. I finished paying the mechanic here this morning. The total of the entire project ended up being somewhere around 1800Q not including the gas that it took to get to and from the city, twice. After all is said and done, it cost somewhere around three hundred dollars, and I am still not entirely confident they are going to work. I got to the school a lot late and to my surprise the teacher I had requested was sitting in my stall waiting to teach me. A little jokingly and a little serious, when I left the school last Friday I said that if they could give me that one particular teacher (of course she was the prettiest of all the teachers) that I would be able to stay another week. It was great to come to class and see that it was going to be a good week. Im a little hesitant to say what I am thinking, because my Mom has been reading some of these and got mad at me for writing what I did. Ill say that I am keeping as true to my Lent promise as physically possible, but it is really nice to see a cute girl across the table from me to work on Spanish. Plus I will not only learn Spanish, but also learn how to talk to Guatemalan girl. My teacher will be able to tell me what they want and what they like or dislike. Think of it as a cultural and an educational experience, because when it comes down to it, most of the decisions I have made have been driven by the beauty of the woman. Doesnt it make sense to learn from the woman along with the man? I think so. Anyway, we went over some verbs this morning and tried our best to communicate. Her English isnt nearly as good as my last two professors, but now I know what the other students were saying when they said that they preferred a teacher that spoke only Spanish. It forces you to think solely in Spanish, whereas before I was always able to fall back on English if I didnt know the word. Yo pienso puedo escribir esta en Espanol. Yo no se. Yo sabo yo tengo aprendi mas. I was hold simple conversation this morning, but entirely understood what the person was saying and was able to answer the questions quickly and with a few correct words. I heard myself as I was saying it, and thought to myself, Hey, look at that. Im speaking Spanish. I guess it would be a good time to write a little of that story. I dont know that it is going to be flowing with the rest of the story.
I had spent months down here and still I felt like nothing more than a walking ATM machine. The local people would run up to me, most of the time smothering me and blocking my path, cramming their wears into my face. Sometimes I would get violently angry, sometimes I would look at their stuff, entirely dependant on my mood.
I had continued my quest for the belt of power. I wasnt actively seeking it, but keeping an open mind for when it might manifest itself. I knew it had to be a gift, and might not even come in the regular belt form. Like I said, I already had two.
A friend told me that he had a friend whos mother was a weaver, and that she had stuff to sell. I thought this a better option than being accosted on the street. She lived a few villages over, and her son took me to visit her.
Her store was nothing more than a garage, with a dirt floor and woven articles covering the walls from floor to ceiling. There were shirts for men and women, tapestries, purses, you know the whole Guatemalan thing. Or maybe you dont know. Everything was filled with color. The Guatemalan people have no problem mixing colors. In fact, it almost seems that the rule of thumb is simply, the one with the most variety of colors, wins. There were blankets and quilts filling one entire wall. Another wall was filled with the pieces, one of which she was working on now, that were mostly used as decorations for tables.
I ended up buying a bunch of stuff. I felt like it was a little more personal. Then she pulled out the Fahas, which is the Mayan word for belt. She handed it to me. I knew it was the faha of power. It was filled with the colors and designs native to the local, but was still simple. A straight piece of hand woven fabric, no buckles, no holes. Peaceful perfection. I held it, she knew I was looking for it. Then the thought came to my mind, How much is she going to charge me? Like I said, I had felt as if they looked at me for nothing more than a source of funds. She said, This is a gift.
If I didnt know before, this sealed the deal. I was officially the bearer of the belt of power. Now what? I had no idea what its powers were. I didnt even know how to properly wear it. I knew it had something to do with my brother. I also knew that a book I had recently bought called Polpoh Vuh was going to be my guide as to what the true nature of the belt, and the relationship with my brother were. All I had to do was read, and discover.