On archaeological field survey: way to hellandgone New Mexico, thirty miles of washboard dirt road on land so overgrazed it was “cow burnt.” A cold day.
A wide, empty valley fissured by new erosion, arroyos thirty feet deep. On a low volcanic promontory, the scattered stones of an Archaic site like tossed newspapers in a messy room. There was a “kitchen”—a cluster of sandstone slabs—and in the middle of them was a worn grinding stone, a metate.
It was hexagonal. None of us had seen that before. Archaic, therefore thousands of years old—but hexagonal?
In this desert land, wild honeycomb would have been almost the only sweetness.