Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The dangers of the wild...

Some real life pain and meditation happening in these parts. Our story goes starts with a little education and history lesson. Enter the Chechen tree and its little buddy tree the Chaca. The two generally grow within a few feet of one another which is a good thing since the Chechen tree is poisonous (relative of poison oak, ivy and sumac) and the Chaca provides the only remedy.

Mayan legend tells of two great warrior princes who were brothers of enormous strength and skill but of completely different nature. The younger brother, named Kinich, was sweet and tender and loved by all, while the elder brother, named Tizic, was a big stick in the mud who drew strength from the hate and anger nursed in his heart. Legend has it, they both fell in love (surprise!) with the beautiful Nicte-Ha. The brothers declared a battle to the death to see who she would choose.

The battle was long and gruesome, imagine if Robert Rodriguez remade Mel Gibson's Apocalypto. The Earth was torn and the Heavens went into hiding. Eventually both brothers died in each other’s arms. In the afterlife, they begged the gods for forgiveness, and a chance to return to the world of the living and see their beloved Nicte-Ha once more.

The gods granted their wish and Tizic was reborn as the Chechen tree, which seeps black poison from its branches (seriously) and burns anyone who touches it, and Kinich was reborn as the Chaca tree, whose soothing nectar neutralizes Chechen’s venom.

Anyhow, the point of all this is to show you our little run in with Chechen. Ben, helping the guys dig out some cisterns ended up chopping the roots of the aforementioned Chechen tree. Unbeknownst to everybody the black sap began to mix with the sand surrounding the cisterns and they continued to dig. Ultimately our dear, sweet Benjamin ended up covered in venom tainted sand. Here's a little of the healing process...

Calamine to draw out the icky stuff

Boiled Chaca leaves and bark tincture help soothe the fiery itch

Really getting down to business with straight Chaca leaves pureed with a little water. This my friends is the ticket!!!

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