El Chorro de Maita/Guardalavaca/Holguin/Cuba

El Chorro de Maita is a 16th century archaeological site in the province of Holguin Cuba that was once a farmer’s home and fields, now turned into a museum. It’s worth a visit and we nearly did not get a chance to visit on account of no one having any Cuban CUC currency on hand. The tour guide saw our concerns and motioned us over saying, welcome, come on in, business is slow today.

After our visit, to repay her kindness I dug deep into my backpack and pull out gifts of pens, pencils, and a memo pad. This is a must do on any Cuba visit. Stock up back home at any local .99 cent type store with anything school, health or even beauty product related.

The story I now recall is that the farmer was out digging in his field; something farmers worldwide are known to do often, when he made his first discovery of many. Fearing any repercussions instilled in its people, since the late 50’s, if he was found to be in possession of treasure, he promptly reported the loot found.

In no time at all his home was uprooted and moved just down the road to a less prominent location; his fields uprooted, and the area declared a world heritage site. Not really. This is Cuba we’re talking about.

However, I did look into it and the area would certainly qualify as it’s certainly unique, “as it bears exceptional testimony to a cultural tradition or a civilization which has long ago disappeared”.

Like I sometimes say, no good deed ever goes unpunished. The farmers home was originally placed precisely where native royalty, prior to the arrival of the Conquistador Pinche Spaniards; chose to be buried, along with any and all of their royal treasures.

After a quick archaeological tour I go outside to enjoy the countryside and envision it, as I imagined the farmer once did.

I soon encounter this old Cuban guy selling what can only be described as baby sized ripe bananas. This is the midget size variety he tells me. I try a pinky sized sample, that he offers me.

Imagine the best and tastiest tasting fruit you have ever eaten and then multiply that taste; almost better than the best tasting candy or dare I say chocolate.

Once again out comes my backpack full of goodies. I find myself trading school supplies for fruit. And soon, extremely satisfied with his trade the farmer departs but, soon returns.

He started to tell me a story of how he made the first discovery. Wait I say! You’re the farmer? I dug down even deeper this time, the best of the USA items like Goya food seasoning, deodorant, and cleaning sponges.