It’s February and there’s 3 inches of ice on the driveway. It must be Caye Caulker time. This year we have an added traveler. My daughter, Angela, is flying from Salt Lake City to meet us in Belize City. Angela introduces herself as Moment and that’s how I’ll refer to her here.
We gave her directions on what to do if our flight got messed up. Cab to water taxi, water taxi to Caye Caulker and find a place to stay. We suggested Tina’s. She of course did her own thing.
We had problems with AA on Sunday when we tried to leave. They left without us and several other passengers. They basically told us to “try harder” to get there earlier next time. The result was we changed airports and flew to Miami. A night at a Courtyard for $200 and we’re off to Belize in the morning. Next time, we’ll try harder to find a different airline.
Actually the trip from that point went without a problem. We met Moment on Front Street. She spent the night at Bella’s and seemed to meet half the island. She kind of moved to the island like she belonged there. I'm pretty sure this was her favorite part of the trip. She also spoke highly of Bella's
We’re at Jan’s Place again this year. We like the idea of 3 bedrooms so we can all easily stay together. The big porch works out well. They’ve added Jan’s Tours this year but we didn’t take advantage. They also have cheap Belikin and we did take advantage. The vegetation has grown up some but it’s still a pretty view.
Since we were a day late, we missed our snorkeling trip. We checked with Carlos Tours and were able to go out the next day. On the way out, he found someone cleaning fish so we got an extra stop. Rays everywhere. A turtle (Loggerhead he said but we think Hawksbill) swam around. There were a few people enjoying the view. The turtle was kind of swimming back and forth. I lost track of where he was and suddenly had a pain near my hip bone. The man-eater bit me. I was told that he bypassed a couple of people to get to me. I guess he was tired of having his picture taken. The pain didn’t last long but the bruise did. I got to be entertainment for the rest of the day.
The rest of the tour was fun. We got the normal 3 stops and I didn’t have to deal with another turtle. It was Moment’s first trip and I think she enjoyed it.
Dave and Moment hadn’t been inland and hadn’t seen any ruins so we decided to give them the chance. We used Tsunami Tours to set up a visit to the ruins at Lamanai. The cost was $85 or $90 US and proved to be a good value. We took the 7:30 water taxi to Belize City and met their contact. He hooked us up with a taxi driver who took us to Orange Walk. We met up with the Reyes family on the New River for the boat ride to the ruins. They provided an excellent lunch The ride up was fun and the guide made frequent stops. The ruins were easily worth the trip. We saw and heard howler monkeys but no toucans. We did finally see a crocodile on the ride back down the river. When we got back, we were off to Belize City in our taxi to wait for the 5:30 water taxi. It was a full day but worth it.
The other 2 full days were dedicated to chilling. We walked around to enjoy the island and take pictures. One morning, brother Dave and wife Sue rented a kayak from Tsunami. They paddled through the split and around the north end of the island. Sounded like it was a lot of fun and they saw a lot, including rays in the shallow water. The problem was that they forgot to ask if it was self bailing. If you don’t know about that, it means the water will drain by itself. In this case, it wasn’t. Dave reported thinking they were paddling the Exxon Valdez by the end of the trip.
The food was good everywhere we went. We ate at Wish Willy twice and had great meals both times. We’ve gotten to where we tell Maurice to fix us something and just go with it. New paint on the tables and some new chairs. Pretty much the same ambience as before. We also ate twice at Herbal Tribe. The food was great but I missed the drums. The music the first night was an assortment of Reggae and Belizean and good listening. The second night was American Pop. We told the waiter if that was what we wanted to hear, we’d have stayed at home. They eventually changed the music.
Dinner one night was at Rasta Pasta. Good service and good food. Breakfast was mainly at Happy Lobster. I like their special (even with shrimp) and like watching people walk Front Street. Syd's was good and the new place across from the basketball court was good for the price. Not much room, though.
We even watched part of the island championship basketball game. Island Vibes against the Ruff Necks. It was a lot better than I expected. The Island Vibes won largely because the Ruff Necks had no answer for #3, Kaco. He had a lot of talent and looked like he’d had good coaching.
A few thoughts before ending. There’s a lot of construction going on. Four new condos that we saw going up. It will soon change the feel of the island but hasn’t yet. Maybe its progress and good but it isn’t what we’re hoping for. We even saw 2 scooters on the island. I think there are more golf carts than in the past too. You have to pay more attention walking. There’s a long way to go to catch up with San Pedro though.
We had a great time and will be back. Moment had such a great time that she’ll probably be back way before us. In fact, she already has been. We went to the airport on Saturday. Her flight was delayed 6 hours. It took her two minutes to say, “I’m going back to the island.” She negotiated a Tuesday flight, caught a cab and was on her way back to Caye Caulker. For her, the adventure continued. She did catch the Tuesday flight and is home in Park City. It won’t be long before she returns.