Tuesday 23rd August 2011

First real trace of GCC!

Today we headed back along the shores of Lake Atitlán towards the Reserva Natural. From the entrance we walked back along the access road, and it was not long before we found ourselves butterfly-watching in front of a row of small cabins. Seeing us behaving strangely (wielding a butterfly net and crouching on the ground in order to photograph insects are not usual activities here!), an American lady came out of one of the cabins, curious to know what we were up to.

I explained our story, and the fact that my great grandfather had been here in December 1880….and by chance I added the fact that he had slept overnight in a flour mill. The husband suddenly announced that there was a large, derelict mill a few hundred yards behind the cabins, hidden by trees.

He led us into the vegetation along a barely perceptible path, and pointed us in the right direction. Sure enough, after ploughing through the undergrowth for a short while, there before us was the mill building itself, complete with mill stones and the hop down which the grain would have fallen. The building appeared to have been abandoned relatively recently; I leant in to photograph the interior through the metal bars. So here, for the first time, we had found a PRECISE location visited by George – it was a strange feeling indeed to feel we were so close to him.

The mill, nestling beneath the forested hill

The mill interior - did George climb these stairs to sleep?

We are off tomorrow to the Finca Las Nubes, another location where GCC definitely stayed…..there will be much to tell when we return from there. As there is no internet access at Las Nubes, I shall be out of communication for a while.

Golden-banded Dartwhite, Catasticta teutila

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