Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Earth Moved

Last night's 7.1 earthquake off the coast of Honduras was pretty darned close to us. Several reports from Dangriga, PG and Placencia show that there was structural damage, power and water outages, and the water tank was knocked to the ground in Independence village.

We felt nothing, (although I did have some weird dreams last night), but people situated further away from the Sea did experience tremors. About four inches of water splashed out of Jeannie's pool, and the BYC pool is very low as well. The worst of it was that there was a tsunami warning out for about a half hour.

Except for some pictures hanging sideways on the walls this morning, we haven't noticed anything else yet.

Thanks to everyone who checked up on us!

For more information, click here, for pictures of the damage in Placencia, click here.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Sky Angel aka "Bindi Jade"

This beauty is for sale. For details and pricing, click here

Monday, May 25, 2009

The Snake Whisperer

Shanley's sister, Erin, has been working on their old boat, Sky Angel the past few weeks. They are going to sell it and Erin's been sanding and replacing all of the wood interior, cleaning it up and cleaning it out.

Yesterday, she came across an uninvited guest. She says it's a small python, which got on the boat somewhere between San Pedro, Rio Dulce, Belize City, and back to San Pedro. She brought it by for us to see, but I merely looked outside, while Renita followed her around and got these pictures.

She reminded us of Huckleberry Finn, with her pole and bucket. You can see the critter peeking over the side of the bucket.

A little closer shot

She took it across the street to La Isla, and all Mahmood could say was "No snakes in here, no snakes in here".....guess we now know how to get him to do what we want him to do!!

She introduces it to it's new home in an almond tree.....

He seems to curl right up on the branch

Wrapping himself around the trunk

Hiding out in the leaves..... run free little snake, run free and have fun!!!

Thursday, May 21, 2009


Today, I got on cleaning frenzy. I don't know why....well, yes, I do know why. I was making out a list for shopping, and knew that somewhere in the inner recesses of our cabinets I would find half of the things that were already on my list.

I didn't quite find half of the items, but I did find several. Like I now have 25 packages of blueberry muffin mix. Seems a few of those slipped down behind other things, and well, you know, I just kept ordering them, and now I have enough to last me about six months.

The things I found in the bathroom though were quite amusing. People come and people go, and generally, they leave something behind. For us, it's sunscreen. If you are a friend or family member, and you come to see us, please don't bring sunscreen. We have it all........Reminded me of this....

Ladies and Gentlemen of the class of 1997.....

If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be IT!

The long term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience.

I will dispense this advice now.

Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth. Never mind. You will not understand the power and beauty of your youth until they have faded. But trust me, in 20 years you'll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can't grasp now how much possibility lay before you and how fabulous you really looked.

You are NOT as fat as you imagine.

don't worry about the future, or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubblegum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind. The kind that blindside you at 4:00 pm on some idle Tuesday.



Don't be reckless with other people's hearts, don't put up with people who are reckless with yours.


Don't waste your time on jealousy, sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you are behind. The race is long, and in the end, it is only with yourself.

Remember compliments you receive, forget the insults. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.

Keep your old love letters, throw away your old bank statements.


Don't feel guilty if you don't know what you want to do with your life. The most interesting people I know didn't know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives, some of the most interesting 40 or 50 year olds still don't.

Get plenty of calcium.

Be kind to your knees, you'll miss them when they are gone.

Maybe you'll marry, maybe you won't, maybe you'll have children, maybe you won't, maybe you'll divorce at 40, maybe you'll dance the funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary. Whatever you don, don't congratulate yourself too much or berate yourself either. Your choices are half chance, so are everybody else's. Enjoy your body, use it every way you can. Don't be afraid of it, or what other people think of it, it's the greatest instrument you'll every own.

DANCE. Even if you have nowhere to do it but in your own living room.

Read the dircetions, even if you don't follow them.

Do NOT read beauty magazines, they will only make you feel ugly.

Get to know your parents, you never know when they will be gone for good.

Be nice to your siblings. They are your best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you in the future.

Understand that friends come and go, but for the precious few you should hold on to. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle, because the older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young.

Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard, live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft.


Accept certain inalienable truths, prices will rise, politicians will philander, you too will get old and when you do you'll fantasize that when you were young prices were reasonable, politicians were noble, and children respected their elders.


Don't expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund, maybe you'll have a wealthy spouse, but you never know when either one might run out.

Don't mess too much with your hair, or by the time you are 40, it will look 85.

Be careful whose advice you buy, but be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia, dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wipng it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it's worth.

But trust me on the sunscreen.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

It Takes A Long Time To Grow Old Friends

No trip to the US would be complete without a night with my Five Fabulous Friends. This time we managed, thanks to Mike (aka Guido) and Annie to have two awesome throw downs at her house.

The first night it was just the girls, the night before Melanie's wedding, and the second time, we decided that the "Along for the Ride" gang could join us.

We are a snitty bunch of old broads, aren't we?

Mike is making some sort of flat bread from a Bobby Flay recipe he tweaked. I can't remember everything that was in it, but there was feta cheese, meat, black beans, and all kinds of good stuff. I bet the guys at the firehouse love it when he cooks, because we sure do!!

Here they are all rolled up and ready for the grill. I'd really like to report what exactly he put in there and how he did it but I truly can't remember. Once they came off the grill, we sliced them....yummy!!!

These are the hands of the Fab Five. Don't ask why.....because, again, I can't remember, but it was important at the time.

Here we all are in a semi-upright position, Janet, me, Maureen, Pam, and Ann. We have little clippy things that Ann bought for all of us with our initials. See, I remembered that......

We are all laughing hysterically at something, but for the life of me I couldn't tell you what it was....again, I forgot.

Mike, Annie, and Jack

Mike the Party Peeper, 'cause every party needs a peeper

This is Maureen's foot. Now, you might be asking yourself why I would put a picture of her foot on this blog. Well, if you notice, she has somewhat of a "dew claw" on that right foot of hers. Known about it for years but forgot until she mentioned it that night. Her brother always said they should have clipped that thing off when she was born. Only purpose it serves is to fill her shoes.

These are five fabulous feet. I do remember why we took this, because we didn't know what was wrong with our faces because we all laughed til we nearly cried about the "dew claw", so we figured just for fairness, we'd all take our shoes off!

I'm sure we are all laughing at something terribly funny. Damned if I can remember what it was though......

A fun night was had by all. But then again, we all seem to be pretty enthusiastic about continuing to grow old friends.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Happy Birthday Melanie

Having a particularly chaotic Monday today. On the internet to wish Melanie a Happy Birthday and twelve different things start falling apart at the same time.

I won't bore you with the details, but the events required a lot of mental and physical energy in a short period of time.
Finally, things seem to have settled down a bit.

Melanie sends me a text message, "Is it worse than it was 32 years ago?" I said, "absolutely, at least at the end of that day I got a prize." And what a prize she has been!!! Here's a couple of pictures......Happy Birthday Honey I love you!!!

Learning to ski

With her trike

With her new hubby

Saturday, May 16, 2009

I Am a Sweat Machine

So here in Belize, at the end of May, first of June, it's hotter than a whore in church. That's my dad's way of describing the weather in the Summer.

It's not only hot, there is no air moving. If one of the Island Academy kids would happen to have a tiny bit of flatulence on their way to school in the morning, it would be the only breeze we would have for an entire day.

If you don't have sufficient sweat glands, and have problems in the heat with just turning beet red and not sweating, and you are looking for a donor, I'm your girl.

Rates negotiable. Trust me, I have plenty to spare.

Chasing My Tail and Finding a $20

It was the beginning of April, a week before Easter, and we received some news about a member of Renita's family that was not good. After pondering for a day or so, she decided that there was nothing for her to do but to take a trip back to Indy and try to help with the situation if there was any way at all for her to do it.

That's just the way she is. When someone she cares about is having a hard time, she is driven to help, in whatever way she can. She will put her own issues and wants aside to go out of her way to help a friend, and even more so when it's someone she loves. One of the reasons I love her.

After a long walk, and a lot of soul searching, she decided that she would go back immediately and stay for a month to help, to do whatever she could. We booked her a frequent flier trip and on the 6
th of April she was gone. I spent the day she left in mourning. Not because I can't live without her, but because I don't want to. I understood what she needed to do, but we are rarely ever apart.

Needless to say, one week before Easter, I was also a little panicked about being here with the Easter crowd by myself. Since she is the breakfast
aficionado, and I am the shy, quiet one, I wondered how I would fare during her absence. She was scheduled to be gone for 14 days and come back to Belize on the 19th.

I surprised myself. The main group of guests arrived that same week, and I was able to do both the breakfasts for them and all of the other things that she does every day. There was a fantastic group of people here during that ten days or so that overlaps Easter. Three girls, one who had been here before, along with two of her friends came for a week. They were all originally from the same town in Australia, although two of them live in New York now. We started talking one day and realized that they were actually from the same small town that Brady, Shanley, Erin and Cal were from. So I arranged a get together at BC's, and they all had a little "old home" week.

Jeannie, Ken and the kids were gone to BlackRock Lodge when Renita left, and so I cheered myself up the best I could. There were several other guests who were just so nice and fun, and it sort of felt good to know that I COULD do this if I had to.

Kristin and Tim from Chicago, and Dave and Bonnie rounded out the week. Keeping track of 11 people and all of their trips and tours for several days was a challenge, but I don't think anyone had a bad time or a bad breakfast while I was in charge. I chased my tail a few times, and a couple of other tails, but eventually found all the tails and put things in place.

When Jeannie, Ken and the kids got back, they were so sweet in inviting me to hang out with them nearly every day, so that I wouldn't get too morose, but the truth is, that I was pretty darned tired and was in bed most nights by 8:00!

Renita was having some success in helping out, and was helping my daughter with some things for her wedding. They talked daily and saw each other a lot. Since I was already scheduled to go up for the wedding late in the month, it was good to know that since I couldn't be there to do some things for Melanie, Renita was there and was helping her.

A few days before she was due to come back, she called me and said that she realized she was going to need more time with family, and since there were only a few guests checking in during the interim, I should go ahead and come up for the wedding as planned on the 22nd, and that instead of returning on the 28th like I had planned, (the wedding was on the 25th), we would both stay until the 5th of May.

She stayed up late at night (one night all night) and made lists and schedules, enlisted the help of Rebecca, Jeannie, and Tammy so that someone would be available for the few guests that we did have. She made schedules, lists and letters for the employees; she wrote letters to the guests explaining the situation and we decided to give them cash for their breakfasts so that they would still get breakfast with their stay; she sent emails and zip files from a crappy US internet connection that we pick up from the Alice in Wonderland House to me for printing. She basically did everything and sent it to me, all I had to do was get on the plane.

On my Tropic flight over to International, I had my IPod in my ears, with Kelly McGuire singing "Solitude" and over the song, I could hear the crackling of the pilot's radio, all the time looking at the little island I love, the sea, the sea, the sea.

This trip was also a frequent flier trip, and they don't always give you the most direct route when you travel that way. First stop was Miami, where I had time to run through customs and immigration, run to my gate, and get on the plane. Second stop was Dallas, where I did the same thing, except instead of having to go through customs and immigration, I had to figure out which high rise subway to get on and find my gate. I made it in the nick of time though, just as the flight was boarding.

The air was cold when I arrived......brisk would probably be how the locals would have described it.....cold to me. I didn't wait long at the airport before she showed up to collect me and my bags.......It was nearly midnight there, and I fell into bed, exhausted, even though I had slept on every flight all day.

Funny how people think that flying somewhere is not work. I'll wager against that every time. Not only is it stressful to get into and stay into the correct lines and areas when you are traveling into or out of the US, but then you have to attempt to do an OJ Simpson move through damned near every airport you are ever in so that you don't see that awful site of the door to the gangway being locked in front of you. In addition to that, you nearly always have to sit next to some strange person (some are stranger than others) in close proximity, while some faceless "captain" tells you that you are 42,000 feet above the earth. 100 push ups wouldn't make me that tired. Ok, maybe, but probably not.

I was delighted and surprised the next morning when I woke up. It has been six years since I have been north of Mexico in the springtime. I had forgotten the wonders of spring in the Midwest. When we arrive every year in late August, the Hostas are blooming, the "Liveforevers" are blooming, Asters and Mums have started to bloom.

The end of April though, is different. This is what I found that I forgot I's kind of like putting on your winter coat for the first time of the season and finding a crumpled up twenty dollar bill in the pocket.

All the little spring flowers!

Red tulips....I used to have 200 of these and 200 yellow ones in front of my house

I love yellow daffodils

...and the white ones too

Most people mow this stuff down....I love it!

The frogs have still not finished their checker game

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Lobster Fest

Email us at for special room rates and packages. There will also be a "BLOG FIESTA" during this week, for bloggers from all over the place! Hope to see everyone here!


So, ok for all of you who don't know, and even all of those who DO know, it's been a very loooooonnnnngggg month. Thanks to those of you who have sent me emails and comments about "hey when in the hell are you going to post something new on your blog".

So get ready, I've got a lot of pictures and a lot of information (and gossip) just waiting to post on here, in between the daily power outages, internet outages, and frequent mismanagement of my own time!!!