Mayan Apocalypse Believers Take Refuge in French Town

Could a small secluded French village survive the end of the world? Many believe so.

Bugarach, one of the poorest and least populated areas of France, is becoming a doomsday destination among “the esoterics,” The New York Times is reporting. According to the piece, believers have concluded the town will be the only location saved from the reported Mayan calendar destruction that will occur on December 21.

Jean-Pierre Delord, the mayor of Bugarach, found out reading Internet forums that scores of believers in the 'Mayan Apocalypse' plan to take refuge in the village this year, alarming him.

“Some web sites in the U.S. were selling tickets to come here,” said Delord. “We are 200 locals; we don’t want 2,000 to 3,000 utopians showing up in Bugarach.”

Several web sites dedicated to the apocalypse theory believe the mountain of Bugarach is “a sacred place that will protect them from the end of the world.”

“Some even believe that, on doomsday, they will be spirited away by a group of aliens who live under the mountain,” states the newspaper. “The date in question is when a 5,125-year cycle in the Mayan calendar supposedly comes to a close.”

Sigrid Benard, a local innkeeper, told the newspaper she has received numerous calls from people wishing to reserve rooms and mobile homes from the beginning of December 2012 to the end of January. She offers rooms only in the summer. She reveals many people wanted to arrive three weeks before the apocalypse and book the week afterwards to see what would occur.

Delord is worried Bugarach will become a safe haven for “apocalypse believers and lunatics.”

“Those people belong to a New Age circle of influence,” said Delord. “Today, they do business on pure fables; they build inns and organize collective therapies.”

Several reports online suggested former President Francois Mitterrand visited the peak of Bugarach by helicopter. There was also allegedly a “halo of cloud shaped like a spaceship around the summit and that plans never flew over the mountain because of supposed magnetic waves.”

Residents even stated they sometimes see crowds of people with their arms crossed in an X shape, climbing the peak with figurines of the Virgin Mary in their hands. One Finnish reporter said he once spotted groups of people carrying a ball and a golden ring hung by a thread. Some, he insisted, were dressed in white. Others were naked.

Meanwhile, Delord is wondering how he could save his village not from Doomsday, but from the masses.

“If it happens as in Mr. Spielberg’s ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind,’ it would be necessary to call in the army,” said Delord.

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