By: Michelle Stegner
Why I Want to Experience the 2012 Mayan Solstice Celebration in Belize
With the 2012 Maya Winter Solstice just weeks away I am taking a break from the holiday hecticness to reflect on my life and career since my last visit to Belize. In 1998, as an undergraduate in college, I traveled to northwestern Belize to work at the Maax Na Archaeology Project. I camped in the Rio Bravo Conservation Area for one month, surveying and mapping a Mayan ceremonial center. The experience of this different place, culture, and environment was the start of a new adventure and the beginning of my career.
At the trips end my boyfriend (now husband) traveled from Maine to visit me and for several days we explored the Belize landscape. Although we spent only one day at Chaa Creek, we still reminisce about the adventures we had and dream about returning to explore. Belize is a place rich in culture, enveloped in nature and steeped in magic. It is a place like no other.
So much has happened since my last visit to Belize, a journey that has included loss of loved ones, new additions to family, internal growth, and the development of my career. I want to return to Belize, specifically Chaa Creek, to reconnect with what I found there 14 years ago.
It would be a chance to bring my experiences full circle, seeing the land with new eyes, reconciling and fully accepting the changes that have happened in the world. Most importantly I want to visit Chaa Creek to show my 9-year-old son what I found there. For him to experience this remarkable place at such a malleable age would give me hope for the future.