Field School: Day 3


We got our Mayan names today! I’m absolutely thrilled with mine, even though I’ve known it for a whole year already. It’s a combination of my Mayan birthday (9 N’oj) with the classifier for “woman”. So, now my name is Ixnoj and I’m extraordinarily happy about it.

We’ve been learning how to do introductions and how to say here we’re from.


A full day of classes is, without a doubt, exhausting. In addition to introductions and where we’re from, we also learned school supply vocabulary and a few verbs like “run”, “jump”, and “swim”. We’ve left school and left for a little cafe near the school where we’re all just kind of collapsing. We’re going over our logistics and the details of the experience. I’m one of three non-linguists here, and the only one that’s going to stay on for the research portion, so I’m feeling a considerable bit of Impostor Syndrome. We just went around and described our research plans and mine was… well. It was different.

I’m starting to fit in a little more, I think. My personality is coming out more frequently and in more strength; I think everyone knows to point out ice cream vendors to me because I will more than likely immediately contribute to the local economy.


Today I successfully found the way home from the café. I only had to use the map twice, but once was to try to track down the skateshop that I saw yesterday so I could stop in and see what they had. Nothing exciting or even quality, and a walmart-level board would cost me bespoke-level money, so looks like I’m walking everywhere. In any case, I got home by myself and it’s a source of pride. On my way home, I also popped into the candle shop and said “ütz, matyöx” to the shop girl when she handed me the right candle I wanted. I was promptly interrogated by some very curious elderly Kaqchikel men as to why I was learning Kaqchikel and how long I’d be in town and where I was from… I got to bust out some vocabulary that I learned today and I think I used it properly! Progress!

Today’s Vocabulary

Rïn – yo, I
rat – tú/usted, you
rija’ – él/ella, she/he
röj – nosotros, we
rïx – ustedes, you all (formal)
rije’ – ellos/ellas, they

ja’ – sí, yes
manäq – no
achike – cómo/qué, cuál, quién; how/what, which, who
akuchi’ – donde, dónde; where
aj akuchi’ –  a donde, from where

tijoxel – estudiante, student
tijonel – maestro, teacher
tinamït – pueblo, town

nub’i’ – mi nombre, my name
ab’i’ – tu nombre, your name
rub’i’ – su nombre, their name (singular)
qab’i’ – nuestro nombre, our name
ib’i’ – nombres de ustedes, their name (plural, formal)
kib’i’ – nombres de ellos/ellas, their name (plural, informal)

nutinamit – mi pueblo, my town
atinamit –
tu/su pueblo, your town
rutinamit – 
su pueblo (de él/ella), his/her pueblo
quatinamit – nuestro pueblo, our town
itinamit – su pueblo (de ustedes), their town (formal, plural)
kitiniamit – su pueblo (de ellas/ellos), their down (informal, plural)


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