Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Un-Belizable!

Ladyville Belize to Belmount Belize

Entereing the country of Belize, I was welcomed by the craziest of road conditions and speed bumps I’ve ever seen.



But boy was it beautiful.

My first night in Belize we stayed in Ladyville, close to Belize City. We luckily found a hotel before night fall, which seemed to be the only one around for miles. Funny thing, this hotel was run by a Chinese family that emigrated from Taiwan. The owner, a tall skinny Chinese man, was over enthusiastic about our stay and was running around and hovering around us for anything we needed. Our room service with food was speedy and funny as two Asian men scuffled in their flip flops into our room with grace, precision and very speedy to leave us our food, smiled heavily and closed the door behind them. 

Not only that but they let us put the bikes in the lobby of the hotel over night.






Along with the hotel owned by Chinese so was the supermarket across the street. Apparently there’s a big Chinese community in Belize, who what have thought? It was un-belizable!

Who knew I would have the opportunity to practice my Chinese while in Belize. As I confused the owner and the receptionist by ordering and talking with them in Chinese, a banquet was an underway in the lobby for a birthday party.

As we left the hotel, I noticed that that the entire time I was there, I had a strange familiar feeling as if I’d seen that hotel or something before. Turns out it had a similar feeling as the hotel in “the Shinning” with Jack Nicholson, a little spooky but I thought was awesome.



As we left the hotel we headed toward Altun-Ha, apparently a nice Mayan ruin. I finally feel as I have walked along with the Mayans after visiting all these sites.

The amazing "water rock".... not really



Nothing like a morning coconut!


After Altun-Ha nod the worst road conditions I’ve seen yet, pot holes the size of bowling balls and then some, and the highway only big enough for one vehicle, blind turns, where we almost got nicked a few times etc.  Un-Belizable!



We proceeded to the Belize Zoo where we saw some exotic animals
Alex thinking "wooo! too close to the jugular vein"



Sadly, I don't think this dumb looking deer with its tounge hanging out would make it in the wild






Including a poor Jaguar that was showing heavy signs of being in a cage too long by it constantly tracing back and forth of the cage.


Something prison inmates also do, walk back and forth inside their cell, if biological psychology and the natural order of animals and mammals doesn’t come to mind in s correlation, I suggest you put these two together.


We then headed out cave tubing, something I’ve some before but again it was great so once again I joined in its adventure.

Beautiful just like last time. It was like flooding Carlsbad Caverns and tubing through it. Belize has the highest concentration of these cave systems in the world. Seems I’ve maxed out on Cavern experiences with diving and tubing through the best. Fantastic!

Our new friend Edwin

We then ate at a crazy restaurant called Amigos that had some great and funny artwork and bumper stickers.




It was kind of torn down, apparently from hurricane Richard that hit less than 2 months ago, and along with the Belize Zoo that was also messed up and the cavern system that had huge logs stuck in high places from the high rain and strong flow of the river.

As we settled in for the night, we found another Chinese hotel, where I once again confused and startled the owner and their children by talking to them in Chinese, man I love doing that! These kids spoke Chinese, English and Spanish perfectly! These three languages have been considered part of the top 5 most influential languages of our time. These kids are so far ahead of everyone else in their future it’s not even funny. Besides there crazy Belize English accent that spills into their Spanish, it was an amazing experience to meet them and talk with them in 3 languages, and they weren’t even 8 years old!

Well here goes, so it seems everything has been going so well. Think again, to make a long story short, today was my bad day.

Waking up I find my motorcycle has been robbed, only a few things off my from saddle bags, my gas tanks and some bungee cords were taken around 5 am that morning by some hooligans. It was quite sad to be hit with the reality of true life and the ugly that comes with it.

I continue to be sick, fever, sore throat, coughing etc. I’m freezing on my bike driving around, I’m constantly tired and don’t rest, and I forget to eat sometimes with all that is going on around me

I lost my pocket knife I had on my key chain

I got bit by a huge jungle spider

My chain on my motorcycle is giving me issues again

I literary ran out of money coming from Belize to Guatemala

My bike was fumigated in Guatemala upon entrance, but the guy decided to fumigate my face and body while I was still on the bike! And started to burn my skin

So in summary, today I am sick, I was robbed, poisoned, bitten, fumigated and then some. Just another fantastic day on the road huh…… (un-Belize-ably horrible)

Hopefully that will be the last of my Un-Belize-ably corny Belize jokes that have gotten me through this crazy country in humor and not with violence and profanity.

Anyway, we crossed the Belize, Guatemala border today, man all I can say is love speaking Spanish. People talking behind our back and trying to screw us, not going to happen when you turn around and tell the guy in Spanish, no my friend is not American he’s from Bermuda.


So as with every country, you have to import yourself and your vehicle into the country, and then export yourself and your vehicle out of the country, and then you get into a gray zone in-between countries, where you are in neither country, then must go to the next country, and import yourself in and your vehicle again!. All a redundant process that is going to get expensive and continue to be time consuming.

Well upon getting our visas we had to go to the bank to pay our fees, when we war confronted with a huge line that when we first got there hadn’t moved an inch, and when we were in it, hadn’t moved and inch either.
So an armed guard was at the head of the line keeping an eye on things. As he spotted Brett, at 6”7, he walked over to us, gave us a weird look and proceeded to take us to the front of the line. As we passed hours of waiting in line and got our recipes I kindly bribed, oops I mean tipped, that man and we were on our way, saving ourselves a 2 hour line! Nothing like getting put in front of a line by a man holding a shotgun.

Kind of funny, anyone and everyone could just basically run across the border as only two officials were guarding the lift up gate. But anyway, welcome to Guatemala!

Our lunch stop consisted of have the best tasting chicken I’ve had thus far on this trip from a scary looking hut, that had killed the chicken just a few hours ago and just cooked it. Free range chicken, eat your heart out!


As we got to the intersection of Tikal, we had no money, not even for gas, in our hurry to finally get out of the border zone; we were in the country with not assets, not a good feeling. We were running out of gas, and we were going back and forth trying to different town trying to find an ATM with no luck, so we had to basically drive completely out of our route and away 40 min to a crazy town, in which we luckily found an ATM and bank.

We also saw a huge abundance of those little tri-motorcycles you see in India. I thought you could only find them there, go figure.

Upon getting money from the ATM, were sent off by a crowed of people looking at us, as if we were a circus act of some sort.

So replenished with Quetzals, onward we went!

As you can see by this picture, this was a $30 quetzal ($4 US dollar) hostel I thought would be an awesome experience to stay at, but apparently my riding partner was a little scared by the place.

We found a nice hotel with some awesome views.



and some sweet parking

















Upon returing from the pier, I was confronted by a strange looking lady commenting about our motorcycles. As she saw my El Paso TX liscense plate, she started talking English to us. Apprently she was from Canada and has been living in La Reforma Gutemala for the past year. She then proceeded to tell me about how the mountain right behind us, called crocodile mountain was going to line up directly with the milky way and was going to be the center of the apocalypse in 2012 when the Mayan calendar runs out.


So here we are, right in the middle of the end of the world in 2012, fantastic! Ha ha, just another story for the blog right?


Tomorrow Tikal, I hope I’ve had the last of my bad days, I doubt it though.

Adios!



Experiences of Belize-Driving by a dead cow Caracas that had over 20 vultures feasting on it

Meeting the dumbest shyest dog at the Chinese hotel

Leaving a lady speechless at the supermarket when I said thank you in Chinese

Having a street vendor shove his entire arm into a moving truck to have the passenger smell his freshly cut cantaloupe melon while the vehicle was still moving over a speed bump


Getting robbed at the hotel, and getting scammed by the country of belize with useless mandatory vehicle fumigation and insurance fees


Getting my bike fumigated with poisons while still on the bike.