When Fro Rainey and his staff asked my wife and me to go to Tikal and make an architectural survey of the Acropolis, they didn’t specify that we work solid from six A.M. to nine P.M. like regular archaeologists, ethnologists, anthropologists, grave diggers, and sherd polishers.
So I found some spare time on Saturday afternoons and Sundays to doodle.
Here are a few drawings of what goes on in and around and about the great archaeologists’ Paradise in the Peten.
You too can be an archaeologist or even an interested spectator, bird, flora, and fauna fancier, herpatologist, botanist, camera fiend, or just plain snooper.
The plane comes in from Guatemala City on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday, and you can stay over as long as you behave like a tourist. Take along some aralen, entero vioformo, bird-watching glasses, cameras and film, whiskey against the cold nights.
The whole rain forest is endlessly fascinating and you may acquire a sunburn, pick wild orchids, spot a quetzal or at least a toucan, watch the monkeys and try and figure out what the stelae are saying.
Don’t feed or annoy the archaeologists, who are deep, serious M.A.’s and Ph.D.’s developing a frown trying to figure out what made a bunch of midget Indians act civilized or maybe better. It’s all still a wide open problem lacking a words solution and if you can learn the Morse code you can date a monument as quickly as the “beards.” So come, oh come, to Tikal and take home a genuine old obsidian carving tool recently faked in Guatemala City. But keep your hands off the real museum objects. They search baggage at the border. Except maybe you can sneak out an old bone, if it doesn’t crumble.