Day 18: Caye Caulker, Belize
I was looking forward to a mini vacation in my travels and thought it was somewhat deserved considering the prior tumultuous 48 hours. Paradise was only 45 minutes from gang ridden Belize City crime and I was ready to soak it all in.
Caye Caulker is interesting, just as you can’t say Belize City is representative of the country, you probably can’t say the same about Caye Caulker. It’s sunny, easy and everyone takes it slow. It wasn’t a typical party island rather a lot of couples vacationing and snorkeling in Caye Caulker or ready to dive the famous Blue Hole.
One of the more interesting, and sometimes annoying aspects of the island is the men who are ready to entertain the steady stream of female travelers. Most are hoping that you’re looking for a 3-day boyfriend and want you to be the first to volunteer.
On my third day I met Bryan who sells souvenirs along the main road. Like most there he knew I was from Canada as he asked on Day 1, but this day instead of calling “Hey girl” “Hey shorty” or the all purpose “Hey you” he shouted “Hey Canada” and without much to do I went over to talk to him.
Surprisingly, we had a great conversation as he showed me that his pink finger was a marker that he had just voted in the island elections and explained that the island was in a state of transition.
There are many who want to raise rent to wipe out the roadstand vendors, small hostels and tour operators to put in large condos like on the other islands. Apparently there are also infrastructure issues in the rainy season as there as the water washes from the road and the buildings sit in pools of water, rotting the little foundation they have.
I was off to photograph the sunset and he generously offered to show me an area near the iguana reserve but I already had my location picked out so I bid him adieu.
An hour or so later he saw me again and wanted to see the sunset photos. He then asked if I was interested in coming back to his place so he could make me a drink. And of course as I’m from Canada and the locals love BC bud, he also offered a smoke.
He was disappointed when I told him that I was taking it easy tonight and would need to kindly decline the offer.
After that night I decided I had enough of Belize, it was a bit expensive and I had no need for a boyfriend and enough of the island vibe.