The ancient Mayans are revered for their knowledge of astronomy, however, they have also left behind another gift, the tradition of  “Las Cabañuelas,”   which has survived over 500 years.    According to tradition, the first twelve days of the year represent the weather for the each month in the year (January 1st = January; January 2 = February, and so on). When reaching January 13, it goes the other way around, this is, January 13 is December, January 14 is November, and so on. This cycle ends on January 24th, hereafter each remaining day represents two months, morning being one month, in this case January, and afternoon representing February.  Then, on the 31st day of January, the 24 hours in the day represent one month starting at 01:00 am until noon (December) and then going backwards again.

The Mayans, and later the Spaniards, used this system to predict the weather, with January being the month that forecasted the rest of the year.  A Franciscan monk traveling with Christopher Columbus, wrote: “Through their gods and observations on the first days of the year, the natives know which days will be good and which will be bad, which will be rainy and which will be dry”.  According to a very knowledgeable local historian, who has for many years, been tracking the weather using this system, has found it to still be relatively accurate.  For more information on this interesting Mayan Tradition, and how the weather can be predicted, check out the following links.   Here and here.

Monica Sauza, a court certified translator, has been assisting island residents with translations abd immigration issues for over a decade.

This story originally appeared in the weekly Cozumel 4 You NEWS – the island’s number one source of positive information about our island!  Be sure and subscribe to the weekly NEWS to find out all the island events! You can find the link on the bottom of our home page.

Monica Sauza
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