Day Four – Belize

Boy, this trip is sure going fast!  Way too fast.  Why is it that when you’re at work your days go so slowly, but when you’re having fun the day is gone before you know it? As I write this I’m listening to my next door neighbor have a loud conversation on the phone. Don’t forget that you can be heard by others and be considerate on your balcony. Your neighbors don’t have to know everything.

Excursion

We decided to do an excursion in Belize because the port area isn’t all that exciting.  And we’d never want to wander around Belize City on our own.  We woke up to rain that kept pouring and pouring.  I wasn’t sure how the day would go but we did have rain ponchos packed.  Always a good idea on a cruise.

We had to meet in the Theater at 8:15 am so we got up,  got dressed, and went to the Lido Buffet to get a quick breakfast.   If you go to the Omelet Station you can get eggs made to order, so I got two over easy eggs.  How in the world do those chefs manage to flip an omelet?  If I tried that it would be on the floor or ceiling.

Delays

After breakfast we ran back to our cabin to put on our sunscreen and get our things. We met in the theater at the appropriate time…and sat there waiting.  Belize is a tendered port and the weather was delaying the tenders.  

Altun Ha

This was our third time in Belize.  Last time was two years ago on the MSC Meraviglia, and the excursion leader went so fast that he lost us.  We were not going to let that happen again. But Carnival did a much better job of letting us know where to go.  A number of groups all tendered in together but we all had stickers on telling them which tour we were with.  We were going on the excursion to the Altun Ha Mayan Pyramids.  Masks are mandatory in Belize both indoors and outdoors.

We’ve been to Mayan Pyramids before, the Xunantunich Pyramids, so we wanted to see something different this time.  The Altun Ha ruins with lunch sounded nice.  We all boarded a bus.  I need to tell you, that bus was really cold, so you might want to bring a light jacket.  Our tour guide was Gus, and our bus driver was Mark, and both were great.  Also, they make you use an unpleasant (to me) smelling hand sanitizer as you get on the bus. Then the bus smelled of sanitizer the entire trip. It was actually making me somewhat queasy. It didn’t help that I had forgotten to take my Bonine in the morning.

It’s about an hour’s drive to the pyramid from the ship. I think that Belizian bus driver’s are crazy but we made it okay.  I’m going to do a full review of Altun Ha later so be sure to check back. As we got there the rain stopped and the sun came out.  And it wasn’t hot out, but very pleasant. It’s a good idea to put on bug spray, but we forgot.  Some other nice cruisers shared with us. They charge you $10 American for a can of spray there.

The pyramids are great, and yes, I did climb to the top of two of them.  And the climb is actually easier than the climb at Xunantunich. They have steps with hand railings, which really did help. What really occured to me was just how peaceful it was in the pyramid courtyard.  I think that I’d like to build a house right in the center of it.  There’s just something about the area. No wonder the Mayans built there.

We were allowed to remove our masks in the pyramid courtyard area, but had to put them back on as we left.  There is a small market as you leave but we only had 10 minutes to shop.  I did buy a doll for my granddaughter.

Lunch

After we went to the pyramid, we stopped for lunch.  I guess that the nice house in front is someone’s home, but they have a small restaurant in the back for bus tours.  It’s a nice area with a lake and horses.  We had rice, cole slaw, and one small piece of jerk chicken.  Drinks are extra but not expensive. There are no diet drinks except water.  You can also buy Belikan beer which is a Belizian brand.  

Back to the port

The ride back was quiet and it started raining again.  When we got back to port it stopped raining and we still had some time for shopping. There are some small local vendors right where the bus drops you off, then a number of shops and small bars inside the port.  You’ll also find restrooms.  We walked around for a while and bought some souvenirs for the family, then got in line for the tender back to the ship.  It didn’t take us long to get onto the tender, and about 15 minutes to get back to the ship since it was anchored five miles offshore.

Nice day

All in all it was a nice excursion.  It seemed like God was watching out for us by giving us perfect weather.  Dry and pleasant.  Not hot and not humid.  You can’t ask for more in the Caribbean. Watch for my review of Belize and Altun Ha later.

Dinner

We were back before 4 pm so we had time to get ready for dinner at 6. Appetizer was French Onion Soup and Alligator fritters. Dinner was BBQ ribs with baked beans, corn, and fries.  Very good. And I had a no sugar added praline cake for dessert.  Our waiters, Jhoanna and Camille are really good. They have a hard job, and yet the manage to be so nice and friendly, remember our names, and always have a smile and hello for us. And then they have enough energy left to dance almost every night.

Meeting people

While we were eating the ship Magician, Aylish, came over to show us some card tricks.  He was pretty good.  I don’t know how he did it.  And then the Maitre d’, Vanburen, came over to say hi.  Very nice man.  He’s always friendly.  Meeting people is what cruising is all about, and I’m glad that I’ve had the opportunity to meet so many people on this cruise.

magician
Aylish, the ship’s magician

Comedy show

The comedy show was in the main theater.  This was our night to switch out comedians.  This was the PG show, of course.  Geechy Guy was our first comedian.  He was okay but I liked the second comedian, Larry Omaha, the best.  He’s a native American and very funny. I’d go to his show again but the PG shows are always repeats. No use watching it again.

End of the day

We got back to our cabin to find yet more goodies, compliments of the pastry chef.  I have to admit that these cream puffs were extremely good.  I think that I could get addicted to them.  Two more days to go, what more surprises could there be?  I do not want this cruise to end.

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