Journey to Xibalba: A Life in Archaeology by Don Patterson

By Don Patterson

While Don Patterson's twenty-seven-year-old daughter grew to become to him for suggestion approximately her expert destiny, Patterson in flip mirrored on his virtually thirty-year event engaged on significant archaeological websites in Mexico and primary the United States. His autobiographical account examines his specialist trip, the folk and associations that made it attainable, and the selections, either stable and undesirable, that he made alongside the way.

Patterson attracts from historic Mayan mythology, weaving the story of Hunahpu and Xbalanque, the Hero Twins, and their voyage to Xibabla, the underworld, into his personal tale so that it will supply an analogy of the adventure via lifestyles and the day-by-day demanding situations and pitfalls one needs to triumph over. all of the book's 8 chapters are named after the homes of trying out in Xibalba and mirror the folks, environments, financing, and politics of the various archaeological initiatives Patterson labored on all through his profession. The ensuing tale is an element Indiana Jones and half research of the issues dealing with sleek Mesoamerica among globalization and nationwide patrimony.

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The giant’s four companions, sitting at the table next to the soldiers, were obviously shaken. They sat there stiff, erect, and frozen in a time warp, with their mouths open and eyes wide. They reminded me of icicles hanging from the limbs of a tree. The giant must have recognized The House of Portals (FLAAR Project) v 49 Figure 3 Nicholas Chelmuth (photo by author) the sound of the weapon being cocked, for he had turned his back to the counter and stared at the soldiers. Only two of the soldiers had stood up.

Now all I had to do was convince ten artists to go to Guatemala, my wife that we should go, and the administration of the Instituto Allende to help. Easy. Foundation for Latin American Anthropological Research The Guatemalan ambassador to Mexico was most interested in our small group, especially in my Australian student, Morley Grainger, who handled his obvious flirtations with excellent diplomatic skills. Because of this, the formalities went smoothly, and in less than an hour all of our visas had been stamped in our passports.

I kept thinking that all we lacked were fifteen porters to carry our supplies on their heads in order to make this a real safari. , but we had so many bags that by the time the aduana (customs) had gone through them it was midnight. There were no taxis left to take us into town at that hour, so the head of customs gave us a lift in his Jeep. We stayed in a small pensión (boarding house) until we found a house to rent. The Guatemalan ambassador, back in Mexico, had recommended that we contact the secretary of defense, General Santa Cruz, for a house.

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