Monday, April 13, 2009

Corozal: Day 2

This was a very sad day, because Allison had to go home. I think she had a really good time on her Spring Break. We were very busy the entire time, so I don’t know how much relaxation she got on her vacation, but if nothing else, it was education and she got to see me, sounds like a great break to me.

After she got her cab to begin her journey home, we got a van to take us to Orange Walk so that we could go on a riverboat tour of Lamanai, another Mayan ruin. At this point I was a little “ruined-out” from all of the Mayan touring we had done, but I felt like I needed to go just to check it out- I’m glad I did.

When we got to the place that would take us on the river tour, we ate some breakfast and chatted with the owners of the place. There was a really funny guy who made it his job to scare Margo. At one point we were sitting and talking and he took a live baby crocodile and placed it on Margo’s hand. They’re lucky she didn’t fling that guy across the room the way she screamed. That’s not to say I wouldn’t have done the same myself, but it was pretty funny. I’m not a big fan of reptiles, but even I thought this guy was pretty cute and I even held it.

After a nice meal and some practical jokes, we were ready for our riverboat tour. This was great, we would be traveling at 60 mph and all of sudden the tour guide would yell out to the driver he would stop the boat. He would then point out a crocodile, or bird, or iguana that was nearly impossible to see. I don’t know how this guy spotted them so well, but it was really cool to see these animals in their habitats. My sister would have loved to see all of the iguanas in their habitat, as she has one of her own.

This was all really cool, but quite possibly the best part of my day was when we came close to the trees and we saw two spider monkey’s swinging from tree to tree. The tour guide, Carlos, then started making a kissing noise and got some bananas. Sure enough, within a minute those monkeys were on our boat! Margo got to feed one of the monkeys and I was really jealous (I was also a little bit nervous after hearing about the monkey that beat

 up thatwoman a few weeks ago…luckily nobody was beaten up by these monkeys). To the right is a picture of one of the friendly monkeys that jumped on our boat.

After an hour and a half ride on the boat, we reached Lamanai. This was really neat. It was much bigger than Xunantenich and it had a few different things we hadn’t seen before. For instance, the artwork was different. We saw shrines, and stelas that were illustrations of kings. We also saw a ball court, which is where Mayans would play games with a ball and a hoop and the captain of the winning team would be sacrificed to the gods. The rationale behind this is that, who would you rather sacrifice to your gods, the best or the worst? I’m thinking I might have thrown a game or two just so I could live.After climbing another big ruin, seeing some haller monkeys in the trees, and looking at all of the natural flora, it was time to leave.

It was a really relaxing boat ride back, with exception to this one lady. I should preface what I’m about to say by telling you I’m very proud of my northern roots. I love New Jersey with all my heart, but once in awhile you come across someone who just gives all northerners a bad name. On our trip, there was one lady who was so loud and obnoxious and she had to have a comment for everything the tour guide said. Carlos would be explaining how eleven percent of the Belizean community was made up of Mennonites and this lady would say, “Oh, I live outside of Lancaster County and we have so many Mennonites. They are a lot like the Amish and we also have Quakers too…” or one time Carlos pointed out the blue herons in the trees and this lady had to add, “Ohhh, those are the little buggers that eat all of the gold fish out of my pond back home. I’d like to have a word or two with them.” It’s not even like this lady was being discreet about it, she felt like she was the center of attention. On top of this, whenever something was pointed out, she felt compelled to stand up and block everyone’s view of what we were looking at. As a result I have some great pictures of the wildlife of 

Belize with this woman’s head in it. To the left is one such picture where I tried to get a shot of a Belizean rum distillery and instead a got a close up of this lady's head. At times I had visions of a crocodile snatching this woman from our boat, but then I realized that it was Good Friday and that it wasn’t very Christian of me to think such things. Alright, I need to calm down. I can feel my blood pressure rising as I reflect on this lady. Whatever, I’m over it. Not even this lady could ruin my beautiful day on the river.

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