opening ourselves with the hinging daylight hours

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Deep in the jungle in the mayan mountains in Belize there is a Jaguar corridor in Central America and across the top of South America. The Jaguar is rare to see

there's some outrageous stories stories and prophecies of the black jaguar.

Belize Species List
black vulture
turkey vulture
great-tailed grackle
roadside hawk
cattle egrit
belted kingfisher
mignificant frigate
brown pelican great kiskadee

Up the Cockscomb Basin the forests are endless. Deep green philodendron dripping the trails lead up to Bluff through the waterfalls , The Tiger Fern Trail, Plane Wreck, Peak Victoria.
Some groups of Maya, known as the Jaguar people, worshipped the jaguar or "Baalum" believing their kings would reincarnate into these cats and so killing a jaguar was a serious crime, punishable by death. There are various languages and people groups of the Mayans speaking two different Mayan languages in Belize. The Mayans who called themselves the Jaguar People believe the Black Jaguar is the holy people who have passed from before.

Deep in those jungles Dr. Alan Ribinowitz established the world's first jaguar preserve after having studied the jaguar and four wild cats in Cockscomb to what is now park of the Jaguar Corridor now 128,000 acres in the mayan mountain jungle, with over twenty miles of trails. The two of us stayed and camped there for two nights, and hiked the Tiger Fern Trail and the Plane Wreck Trail. The dirt mountain road up to the reserve through the forest is six miles long, in the Mayan Mountains. This road was Dr. Ribinowitz's runway for his plane from which he monitored the Jaguars studying habitat, and corridors. The plane crashed one mile down the run-way .1km of the trail in the jungle now covered with towering canopy trees, ferns, covered in a philodendron veining ecosystem. Dr. Ribinowitz, his photographer, and pilot crashed, and the plane still remains beside a small stream. Walking out to the rodeway listening and observing the bird and plantlife a black jaguar was leaving the early morning road as we were leaving the planewreck trail. The black jaguar appeared to be a teenager as its head was quite large, with a strong and growing spotted dark brown/blue/black body.

On the trails there was a white hawk, red-lored parrot, white bellied hummingbird, purple crowned fairy hummingbird, and crested quan. A full species list is list is currently being entered onto There were 17 other nights with beautiful bird filled morning. Every year I return to Belize as my centering site, connecting with the wisdom of the jungles, the Maya, and the Garifuna. The biological and ethnocultural corridors of Central America and Caribbean come through Belize as it is considered to be the only country listed as Caribbean and Central American.

A few years ago the United Nations declared the Garifuna an endangered people group. They live in Belize and are some of the most amazing fishermen and free divers I have ever met. Their story is so beautiful and amazing . THe children and I dove and swam off the dock. We made a new game together called diving for the bottle off the dock. They could hold their breath very long and come up with the bottle. One of the fishermen, named Chop who has free dove 50' can hold his breath for a very long time. The girl who could blow bubbles out her eyes threw the botttle as far as she could off the dock. Chop dove and sawm the full distance coming up with the bottle rising out of the water in what felt like to be a minute later nearly 50' off the dock. Later we talked about the girl who can blow bubbles from her eyes. It feels like an ancient genetic adaptation to equalizing underwater. Her gift is deeply felt, as though passed on from her grandmother's great-grandmother's brother, the first fisherman Garifuna.

Free diving the reef around Tobacco Caye the coral reminded me of a show called The Snorks from when I was a child. Looking into the complex and diverse coral system , marine life homes, fish with houses with rooms, and what appeared to be a living room table.

Punta Gorda
Red Bank- Cieba Tree
Crooked Tree
Orange Walk
Cerros Pre-Columbian Art Research Institute
Monkey Bay
Sibun River
Jungle Rice and Bean SPice and the driver
study stars, spanish, and bird songs.

Cockscomb retreat The plane landed late last night bringing us into Dangriga , along the Caribbean Sea and dancing Punta of the Garifuna Creole people. The boat caught us in the

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