Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Belize City March 5&6

Well friends and neighbors, this is one of my first travelogs in this blog for Belize travel.  Since I’m now living in Belize and doing a little investing here and here, I will provide up-to-date information that you may be able to use if visiting.  There are, of course, a plethora of travel books that have good information.  But I will let you know the raw truth and not try and sell you on the idea that you can have a sweet retirement here on $450US a month.

So anyway, me old hen and me went to Belize City this last weekend (March 5-6).  My old hen, her pirate name is Esmeralda, is working with the small Japanese community here and planning a Japan Culture Day for March 19th. 

So we headed to the City and stopped and got some free bananas and oranges on the way.  We can run faster than them plantation security dudes so it’s free for us.

But back to the Japan Day stuff…  There are about 20 Japanese adult residents and around 15 temporary residents that work for the Japanese equivalent of the Peace Corps.  So some of them have been getting together for the last couple of years and showcasing some Japanese culture.  I am American (pirate name Dr. Buzzard) but my old hen is Japanese so she is heavily involved with them.  This is her first year, so she is especially excited.  I will be the security and camera man, but I am looking forward to the food and martial arts presentation.

We left our little fishing community of Riversdale about 7:30 AM Saturday and got to Belize City at 11:00 AM.  Went to the Institute of Technical Vocational Education and Training, which is where the event will be held.  They have a nice facility and lots of space for such events.  The guard, Dennis the Menace, was extremely helpful in showing us around.  I went across the road while me hen is measuring for the stage and I got me a beer and a good conversation.  One thing is the hens here really like Americans because they think we are all rich.  But then my hen come and kick me in the shin and tells me to hold the measurement tape.  Damn my luck. 

Now to the more important stuff.  We went and checked into our budget hotel.  The Belcove is just south of the Swing Bridge on Regent St.  About a block off of the main road Albert St.  I have stayed there several times over the years, but hadn’t been there for awhile.  Ms. Myrna has made a lot of improvements on the place.  I liked it before, but now would absolutely say this is one of the best budget hotels I’ve stayed at in the City.    For about $40US a night we got a nice clean room with private bath, TV and fan.  For a little more you can get air conditioning but at this time of year we didn’t need it and I like to travel on the cheap.  Management and staff were very helpful and friendly.  A good budget place to stay and very convenient to the stores, banks, and government offices.

I really like the ambiance of the area.  It can be rather crazy and sometimes a bit dangerous.  You seriously have to watch your 6 in this area.  But it is so fun and exciting as people are just so wild that you never know what to expect.  It may just be me, but I like it when strangers ask me for a dollar and I tell them to give me a dollar, or when some peeps just want to party.  It’s fun, but NEVER, EVER, trust anybody around here ah ha ha ha.

So back to the subject, well, I forgot what the subject was, but next door to Belcove Hotel is Merlin’s Restaurant with good food, good portions, and good prices.  I like the fish and daily specials there.  A little more down Regent St. is Mike’s Club, but it is not for the faint of heart.  This place is seriously like something out of an old west Wild Bill Hickok movie with characters that range from a to z.  However, if you want some play with dominoes or cards it can be a fun place, just don’t mess with anyone as they are more than willing to fight or shoot.  Another half block down is a little bar with some gals that are really easy on the eyes.  You might want to be careful ,though, ‘cause the common law marriage is very common in this country, and women’s rights are fairly high especially if kids are involved.  Don’t drink and flirt!

Shopping in the area is good.  Brodies, similar to a small WalMart is on the other side of Albert, towards the Sea and near the Belize Bank, and they have lots of groceries and other stuff.  I picked up some 20lb fishing line and some steal leaders while there.  Lots of small shops around for about anything you want.  I also like to go down Orange St. off of Albert for the small stores plus lots of little restaurants.  Back up towards Albert St. again, near the park, you will find Riverside Bar.  You can’t miss it from the Swing Bridge as you will hear the musica if they are open.  A nice bar and restaurant beside the river and they always have an eclectic and interesting clientele.

That’s about enough for now.  I still got to tell ya’ll about the Porkman and the rooster, and the other villages.  So I’ll get back to ya soon…

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