Sunday, September 27, 2009
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Monday, September 7, 2009
After the ruins, we drove further inland to Blue Creek for our cave swimming adventure. This is a lodge for academic types to study the rain forest.
And here it is, mere seconds later in that famous rainy season rain.
This is how chocolate is born! Cocoa pods growing wild.
Here is the cave we swam into...after a downpour, in they rain season, with shoes on, no life jacket and into pitch darkness with only a weak caving light for illumination. Needless to say, this is the cave of doom, where I practically drowned.
And looking at how strong the river is, you can see why I should have listened to those warning bells going off in my tummy!
Maya people often still live in these thatched houses. If it ain't broke, don't fix it, I guess.
The Mayan Mountains.
One last sit out on our cabana porch.
Our teeny plane back out to Belize City. This flight was packed. After our first stop, after five minutes of flying, we dropped what appeared to be the pilot's buddy off in Savannah, and took on more passengers. In order to do so, another passenger had to go sit next in the co-pilot's seat!
What I miss the most is the sound of the water, and rustle of the coconut palm fronds, tapping together in the wind. There was always the gentle sound of tapping rain drops, even when the skies were clear.
Friday, September 4, 2009
We finally made it to the mouth of the Monkey River, and there it was - Monkey River Town! I think the current population is maybe 80 (don't quote me on that), but it used to be even more populous than Placencia. A banana blight destroyed the plantations, and forced everyone to move away to Placencia.
It was here we picked up our guide, Percy, aka. Rambo, made out lunch order at Alice's restaurant, and headed back up the river. Rambo was a great guide, friendly and incredibly knowledgeable, and told us about a million plants in the jungle that could either kill you, save your life or help you out with that nasty bed wetting problem.
After seeing iguanas, alligators, bats, and numerous birds we found Howler Monkeys. Percy got them riled up by walking around under their tree and making a ruckus. The dominate male put on quite a poo and pee show to let us know who was boss around here.
We traveled a little further up the river, then landed the boat, and took a walk through the jungle. Covered in bug spray saw more amazing plants, ate a delicious fruit, drank from the water vine and ate real live termites! They tasted grassy and minty, and were so small you didn't really notice you were eating live bugs. We also came across the giant blue crab who makes holes all over the place, and would probably be happy to eat your toes.
After the trip through the jungle, we headed back down the river, stopping to eat some sugar cane, getting rained on in the rain forest. Back at Monkey River Town, we had lunch. Let me tell you people, Belizean stew chicken with rice and beans is ridiculously good. I'm planning on ordering the spice they use, Recado or Recardo, to try it out myself. After lunch, Rambo took us on a tour of the village - which is going to get electricity soon, showing us where everyone sheltered in a 2002 hurricane, the school and the structures they built to curtail the shore erosion.
On the way back to Placencia, we stopped to spot manatees, which we did. Mostly it was their snouts popping up for air, and their tails flipping back under the water, but cool nonetheless.
Next up, we hike to a waterfall, tube down a river, visit a ruin and I almost drown! Just regular honeymoon, really. Now, for your viewing pleasure, a real, live jungle chicken...or iguana.
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
It's starting to feel like a long time ago, but T and I got back from out honeymoon in Belize a few short weeks ago. And we actually saw that delightfully cheesy phrase on quite a few pamphlets and t-shirts!
Yes, the entire plane could easily have heard our pilot from anywhere on board, but he still used the PA to welcome us to the flight, and cursorily give us saftey info. It was only a 30 minute flight, but it was a little nerve wracking. We'd never been in a single engine plane before, and let me tell you, it doesn't even feel like a bus in the sky...it's like a Chevie Astro in the sky.
We could finally sit still. The next day we actually able to take in our surroundings, and man were they gorgeous.
Our little piece of beach.
The land in the distance is actually a quay.
The walk out to the beach and to our cabana
There were flowers everywhere.
The point at the very end of the peninsula.
The Placencia sidewalk. It goes nearly the entire length of the village.
A Traveler Palm
Coming soon, a trip to Monkey River, Cockscomb Nature Preserve, ruins and ...the cave of doom!