At Ek’Balam, you walk through the double bounding wall into the civic-ceremonial area, in the shadow of a large temple-mound. As you move into the open plaza, you see in front of you a ball court, with the largest mound in the distance. Your view of the palm thatched roof crowning that mound should set your heart a-pattering, for park managers only construct these roofs when there’s something nifty beneath. At Ek’Balam it’s a wall of scuptures that’s eye-popping. It even includes 3-D humans.

In the middle of the wall at the base an elevated platform of some kind that seems like a stage. This face, almost a foot high, is at one corner, jutting out toward the viewer. John gazed at it and murmured something about Michael Jackson….