By Gil Beyer, 2006

This is my fifth visit to Yucatán over the past seven years. I’ve only been here a few weeks so far but I’ve noted some anomalies that give me pause. I’m starting to think that there may be something to the Maya tradition that says that December 2012 will change the world as we know it.

When I arrived on January 15 the skies opened up. Rain, drenching rain in January? It rained all the way to San Benito and didn’t quit until about two hours after my arrival at my rental house. We’ve had more rain in the past few weeks than I’ve seen in the previous visits in total.

OK, so it was a little unusual to have that much rain in January. A couple of weeks later we had the second visitation of the locust along the beach. Apparently they had come through just before my arrival and caused quite a stir. That Tuesday they arrived from out of the East and were gathered in sufficient numbers to cast a moving shadow on the ground. They took over two hours to pass.

My landlord is 70 years old and he says that he has never seen anything like it on the beach. Yes, it happens inland, but not on the beach.

Next on the anomalies list is the movement of the flamingos. Just before a recent “El Norte” I saw a flock of at least 250 flamingos flying in a giant circle drifting generally westward. It looked for the entire world like a huge pink and black wheel slowly rolling across the sky. Later in the day there were several flamingos in the ciénaga just east of the Technical School outside Progreso. I’ve never seen them there before. Also saw a fairly large flock of Wood Storks milling about near Progreso.

The afternoon before the tornados hit North Central Florida, we had a powerful offshore wind – south to north – that blew quite strongly. Within two hours of its start the Gulf became like a sheet of glass. The calmest I’ve seen it this trip so far. The next day on the CBS news I saw that tornados – probably three – had devastated some small towns in that area. I’m not a meteorologist but I’m guessing that our strong off-shore wind was caused by one hell of a low pressure system moving east fast over the Gulf of Mexico.

All in all I’m becoming more convinced that the ancient Maya may have been onto something. We have slightly less than six years before the predicted date. Having long ago accepted the fact that there is little I personally can do to materially affect global events of any kind, I’ll just observe and ponder. I would humbly suggest that the best thing we can do is to live life every day as best we can. Laugh frequently, cry seldom and enjoy whatever time we have remaining. Think I’ll get well stocked up on the essentials – beer, rum, salsa and tortilla chips -and enjoy whatever comes our way. Buena suerte!

Dedicated to the memory of William “Cap’n. Bill” Stout who fully understood the need to live each day to its fullest and left us far too soon.

Gil Beyer,
 Casa Tulix,
 San Benito, Yucatán

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