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Showing posts from October, 2003

spelunk, spelunk, spelunk

Today I trekked 45 minutes upriver through primary jungle into a cave, a cave made of rock forged by the dinosaur killer that hit the Yucatan 65 million years ago, a cave infested by vampire bats and blind chittering spiders, a cave used a thousand years ago for Mayan bloodletting rituals and at least 13 human sacrifices whose calcified remains still litter the cathedral-like grand chamber. What I'm trying to say is: You want atmosphere? We got atmosphere. It was a damp journey. The cave was carved by a cold river which is mostly wadable but is often chest-deep and sometimes required swimming, not to mention a fair amount of (very easy) rock climbing. The river is also responsible for the phantasmagoric rock formations found everywhere inside, formations that look like glittering crystalline curtains, arches draped with rippling fabric, frozen waterfalls, enormous columns of melting candle wax, Gigeresque fluted tenebrous ribs, pockmarked by perfectly spherical holes in the ceili