Home is Where we Hook-up

February 8, 2008

First Impressions

Filed under: Travel,Travel in Central America — Heligypsy @ 6:52 am

Belize is one country that really makes you work to discover its bounty of pleasures. For me, the adrenaline had worn off after getting through the border protocol and I was ready to stop moving – anytime. We found ourselves fighting the same road conditions, potholes and unmarked speed bumps that we’d endured for the last 1500 miles. The improvement on the road was that, where the asphalt crumbled to nothing, there is actually a shoulder rather than a sheer drop like in Mexico. This only meant we had a lot more pedestrian and bicycle traffic to maneuver around. And, we were catching up to what looked to be a significant rain storm ahead.

Keith remarked on the obvious British influence of the colonial homes, but I was a little too focused on the trash, junk and dilapidated hovels that people live in. When we reached Belize City, my energy levels spiked with excitement.

“We’re Here!”

We miraculously navigated ourselves through crowded round-abouts and narrow congested bridges onto the Western Highway where both Astrum Helicopters and Old Belize Marina are located. The highway begins at a cemetery. Graves on the left and on the right, and with an island of plots in the middle. That’s right, a drive through cemetery.


The road widens, and the area becomes slightly industrial, and immediately turns to to a garbage dump. This place is supposed to be paradise, is it not? Uuugh, I’m so sick of all the garbage.

After finding and touring the Astrum facilities, we backtracked into town for supplies, and returned along the highway to set ourselves up at our temporary base of Old Belize marina.

The rain storm we’d been following earlier had come through, leaving us little choice but to park in the mud. Keith and I take our shoes off, its no problem, but Zoe doesn’t really understand the “wipe your paws” direction. While hooking up the power, Keith learned that besides being a big mud puddle, the area was home to biting fire ants – now mad biting fire ants. Seemed going outside was going to be challenging.

We were unsure of the draw of our a/c unit on this shared power supply we’d hooked into, and decided that we’d not test it on our first night here – enough breeze was blowing that if we opened all the windows, we’d keep cool enough. Sometime after midnight, both Keith and I were being “zapped”, felt like little jolts of electricity for split-seconds. Our first encounter with the dreaded sand fly, they came right through our screens and ate us as a midnight snack.

The following day, Keith went to the office to settle up on our camping arrangements before heading to Astrum for his check ride and other employment obligations. He returned to the motor home, put the thing in gear and says “I paid up for four days.” I am positive my eyeballs almost came out of their sockets and I repeated, but in a much higher, much louder voice,

“You paid for FOUR days!!!”

That was 8 weeks ago. My impressions of the marina have changed drastically, and I am happy to call this place “home”.

“Travel is glamorous only in retrospect.” Paul Theroux.



  1. See, I love this writing style! 🙂 Send this to the editor, 10+++

    Comment by Sherryl — February 8, 2008 @ 9:15 pm | Reply

  2. I really appreciate that. I’m pretty sure this is only interesting to people who know us, though, don’t you think? (If even that, ha ha ha!)

    Comment by borderlinegypsies — February 14, 2008 @ 7:09 am | Reply

  3. I hate fire ants. Nasty buggars.

    Comment by Laura — February 19, 2008 @ 7:45 pm | Reply

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