“They will be looking for it!”: Little boy’s story


After chatting to some kids about how fast ice melts and the proper way to not be eaten by bears or wolves, a little boy told me this story. He couldn’t have been more than 7 years old. A story from day 2 in the field.

Me: I’m going to Xunantunich{1}, have you two been there?

Little Girl: Yes, the ruins? Yes!

Little Boy: Have you been to Cahal Pech{2}?

Me: I am going there tomorrow.

Little Boy: We went last year. It was last year? Yes. We went there with my aunt. I found a piece of armour in the ground. It was a piece of old armour [motions around his lower arm]{3}.

I pulled it from the ground and was cleaning the dirt off of it when my aunt came and took it from me. She put it in her bag! She still has it. They will be looking for it! Has anyone in your family been eaten by a wolf?

{1} Xunantunich, “Stone Woman”, is a large Maya site that is open to the public between the town of San Ignacio and the Guatemala border. It is secure and popular now but historically it had quite a looting problem. See Pendergast and Graham “Fighting a Looting Battle: Xunantunich, Belize” Archaeology 34(4): 12-19.

{2} Cahal Pech, “Place of the Ticks”, is almost right in San Ignacio. I’ve heard it was associated with the site of Buenavista which I wrote about recently, but I will get back to you on that one. It has been looted in the past as well.

{3} I think he was talking about a largish piece of pottery that was curved, like a tall undecorated vase, that would have covered his little forearm like armour.