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The San Pedro Sun

Fido’s wins Saga Championship Cook Off
Hungry foodies made their way to Wet Willy’s Cantina on Thursday, December 19th for Saga Humane Society’s Cook Off of Champions. Of course food tickets for Saga’s final Cook Off of the year sold out nearly instantly, but even the long wait in line for food was pleasant as Brent Butcher serenaded the crowd. All funds collected from the night were being matched by Saga Board Member, Heather Beck. The family event raised much needed funds to cover the expenses to spay and neuter 40 pets. There was certainly no shortage of tasty dishes, from Orchid Tree Catering’s Lobster Pâté to a fun Meatball Slider from Wet Willy’s, and the food was certainly championship level tasty. But in the end there could only be one top winner and that honor went to Fido’s Restaurant and Bar with their scrumptious and festive Shiitake Lobster Bisque. Nancy Nida, from Fidos’s, was thrilled to receive a gift basket from Lemon Crush Belize. Coming in a close second was Cindy Firth, for her Chicken in Phyllo with a Champagne Sauce. For her delicious dish, Firth received a Digicell cellular phone. And finally in third place was Feliz Bar’s Potato Salad, who won a matted print from Debbie Cooper.

Captain Shark’s Grand Christmas Raffle
Captain Shark’s held their annual Grand Christmas Raffle on Monday December 23rd. The raffle rewarded lucky customers that shopped over the holiday season. First prize was a $2,000 cash prize that went to J &K Golf Cart Rentals, second prize was a Penn/Ugly Stick Spinning Combo with a tackle box that went to Cholo’s Golf Cart Rentals while third prize went to DJ Polo, who received a mares fin and snorkel set with an underwater camera. Congratulations to all the lucky winners!

Caribeńa Enterprises has annual Christmas Raffle
On Monday December 23rd, Caribeńa Enterprises held their annual Christmas Raffle. As a way to give back to the community two raffles were held to reward customers of both Caribeńa Fuels and Coral Cable Vision (CCV). The first Raffle was held at Caribeńa Fuels on Angel Coral Drive, there four winners were chosen by Miss San Pedro Solani Graniel. The lucky winner of the first prize was Nereidi Gonzales, who received a flat screen TV. Second prize winner Coastal Express won 50 gallons of fuel, while third prize winner Jerry Reyes won a home theatre system. Fourth prize was a ham and turkey that went to Carlos Jex, while fifth prize winner Jose Yacab won a new LG cell phone. The second raffle held at CCV included equally fabulous prizes and rewarded CCV’s valued customers. The prizes included a flat screen TV that went to the first prize winner Lucy Marin, a home theatre system that went to the second prize winner Abraham Williams, while the third prize winner Chabi Ayuso received a ham and turkey while three months of free cable went to the fourth prize winner Rita Camal.

Christmas Day Snorkeling at Hol Chan Marine Reserve
What do we do on Christmas day on Ambergris Caye? We go snorkeling at the super gorgeous Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark-Ray Alley…of course!

Misc Belizean Sources

Mickey's Restaurant in San Pedro closes end of year!
The end of an era for sure! Will be sad to see it go, but good luck to Mickey for the future!

Three police officers injured
Three police officers were injured when a car crashed into a parked van on the George Price Highway early on Christmas morning. The officers, identified as PC Mortis, Corporal Gomez and PC Grefella were injured around 2:45 am on Wednesday. The officers were heading towards Belmopan when as they reached between miles 22 and 23, the policemen saw a van that was parked off the highway. Corporal Gomez reportedly stopped and went to investigate what was going on and while doing so, a Geo Prism heading towards Hattieville village slammed into the back of the van. The car was being driven at the time of the crash by 29 year old Oscar Erazo. Traveling with Erazo were Selvin Erazo, 19; Hector Miranda, 17; Edgar Alvarez, 16; Sergio Benitez, 16 and Adonis Miranda, 18. All the occupants of the car are residents of Ladyville. After the crash, Hector Miranda complained to the head and right leg and Edgar Alverez complained of pain to his back. The other occupants of the car escaped unhurt. Corporal Gomez complained of pain to his back; PC Mortis complained of pain to his back, left knee and ankle; while PC Grefella complained of pain from the waist down and had to be hospitalized. The driver of the parked van Amilcar Calderon complained of pain to the left foot. Police have detained the driver of the Geo Prism Car, Oscar Erazo, pending charges.

A man was knocked down and killed on Christmas Eve on the Phillip Goldson Highway.
The victim has been identified as Armin Rodriguez, 22, a resident of Calcutta Village, Corozal. Reports are that Rodriguez was riding a beach cruiser bicycle between miles 79 and 80 on the Phillip Goldson Highway when he was knocked down y a Ford Ranger pickup truck. The driver of the pickup truck, Luis Noriega, 34, told police that he was heading towards Libertad village around 8:40 pm when as he passed through San Joaquin village, Rodriguez made a U-turn across the highway and into the path of the oncoming pickup truck. A collision could not be avoided and Rodriguez sustained serious head injuries. Rodriguez died on the spot. Damage to the pickup truck includes dented bonnet and right front fender, broken headlamp and shattered windshield. Luis Noriega, a resident of San Joaquin village has been detained by Corozal police pending a charge of manslaughter by negligence.

Vehicle crash on the Phillip Goldson Highway
Four people lost their lives in a single vehicle crash on the Phillip Goldson Highway on Christmas Day. The victims have been identified as Hector Gongora, 22; Henry Reyes, 20; Dulce Cobb, 17 and Shakir Monima, 23. The four were traveling in a pickup truck, being driven by Gongora, when the crash occurred around 4:30 pm on Christmas Day. Gongora, according to police reports, lost control of the vehicle between miles 7 and 8 on the Phillip Goldson Highway, ran off the road and crashed into a tree. The four victims were extracted from the crashed pickup truck by personnel of the rescue team from the Phillip Goldson International Airport.

Dolphin show right off our seawall

The Adventures of a Simpler Life in Belize
I’m a small town girl. I grew up in the village of Mahomet, Illinois, and though I moved away, I’ve brought the love of simpler living with me. After becoming a dental hygienist—something I worked as for 33 years—I lived in the Florida Keys, before moving to the Bahamas. Both places were nice—but they didn’t offer that quiet, peaceful, simpler way of life and cheaper cost of living I was always looking for. So my husband Bob and I began to look further afield for such a lifestyle, including in Costa Rica and Panama. Then we came to Belize…and on that first visit we knew it was what we were looking for. It has the strong community feel you’d find in a small town. One of the first things I noticed when we came to Belize was the children—so happy with great smiles. The families are very close and children respect their elders and look after them. The Belizean people have a calming presence to them, so that you can’t help but be more relaxed. Plus they speak English, which makes making friends much easier. Walking down the street, strangers will greet you with hellos with a smile on their face and wish you a good day. And, if you ever need a helping hand, they’re there for you.

Belizeans and true friends of Belize (both at home and abroad), You are reminded of a new, alternative discussion forum, “BELIZE HARD TALK – THE TIPPING POINT (hosted by Paco Smith). Today, 27th December 2013, at 4:30 PM (Belize Time) tune in as we speak with our special guest, Mr. Patrick Rogers, to touch base with a member of one of the progressive political movements which is poised to make a substantive difference in Belize’s: system of governance, body politic and our overall approach to development. FYI, “BELIZE HARD TALK – THE TIPPING POINT” Is an effort to provide those who do not subscribe to the predominant PUPD paradigm, a medium through which to: communicate, discuss and analyse prevailing issues. The goal is to give those who otherwise don’t have unfettered access to traditional mass communication channels, an avenue through which to reach Belizeans both at home and abroad. ‘Hard Talk’ is indicative of the commitment to discuss issues that the politicos and party hacks of the PUDP are unwilling to touch. Meanwhile, ‘The Tipping Point’, is attributed to the text of a similar name, by renowned author Malcom Gladwell in which he defines the concept as, “the moment of critical mass, the threshold, the boiling point…”.


Families Mourn Christmas Day Deaths
Christmas Day proved busy for Police in the Ladyville station as at around 4:30pm they were called out to an area between miles 7 and 8 on the Phillip Goldson Highway where they came across a red 4-door Isuzu pick-up truck with license plates BZ-C-43481 extensively damaged next to a tree off the left side of the highway (when traveling north from Belize City). Inside the vehicle were (4) four Hispanic persons; three males and a female. Investigations have revealed that 22-year-old, Hector Daniel Gongora, a Belizean student of the Lake Gardens area in Ladyville Village was driving the vehicle and upon reaching between miles 7 and 8, he lost control of the vehicle, ran off the road and collided into the tree. The three passengers in the vehicle have been identified as 20-year-old, Henry Gabourel Reyes, a Belizean messenger of Antelope Street Extenstion in Belize City who was seated next to the driver; 17-year-old, Dulce Yanira Cobb, a Belizean Student of Daly Street in Belize City who was seated behind the driver; 23-year-old, Shakir Shamir Monima, a Belizean messenger of Daly Street in Belize City who was seated next to Cobb. All persons traveling in the vehicle remained trapped and were seen motionless suffering from multiple head and body injuries. They were removed by personnel from the Phillip Goldson Airport Rescue Team and were pronounced dead at 5:45pm.


A Christmas Miracle and Picasso inspired art
Our friend Lois did a great job of not loosing her composure when her iPhone was last traced to being on a golf cart that someone else was now driving. The word was put out and fingers were crossed it would some how comeback asap. A couple of days later, Stephanie at Pirates Pizza found the phone which had fallen out of Lois’s back pocket and slipped between the seats. We all agreed it was a miraculous that the phone did not get bounced off or taken. In addition to our ‘Christmas Miracle’ there has been a twist of fate in a few peoples lives. It all started out with my annual chore of getting the gifts together for the Sad Bastards steal a present game. I decided to set my size limit on the first present by recycling one of the cute colorful Christmas bags Mary had given us with yummy treats inside. The present came easy in the form of a $75 Casa Picasso Gift Certificate that I procured from Jackie via facebook messenger. Since we needed a Tinker present too, I decided to try for one stop shopping at Wings the appliance section is always a good bet with their 25% off sale.

San Pedro Scoop: My Best of 2013 – Part Four & A Bit of Christmas
I’m no longer going to apologize for the endless quality this series is taking on. I’m just going to dive back into it. I hope everyone had a very very Merry Christmas. Mine took place at a beautiful beach front condo south of town… Sun,lobster & steak, really great friends that I’m lucky to have down here (as well as odd and awesome Christmas gifts – only here can you get a beach towel from your local poultry shop.) Quality Poultry, run by the Mennonites in Spanish Lookout, has a great slogan. Dis da fi wi chikin. Or This is the chicken for we! Our chicken…you get it. THEY NEED TO SELL T-SHIRTS! I finished off PART THREE flying back from Cancun to San Pedro with Tropic Air in mid-October. I don’t care what you say about Cancun…I have found many reasons to love it. Eight in fact.

Pizza Pocket done
Video recipe

The Belizean Diaspora
The diaspora represent the last bastion for Belize. However, like the rest of the Caribbean Belize remains hostile to its Diaspora and the misguided notion that any other citizens other than those of the commonwealth are suspect to questionable allegiance. Belize must think locally, but act globally. In this age of globalization the citizens as well as the corporations have difficulty in confining themselves to one country. The nations that refuse to comprehend this new phenomenon are condemned to remain backward, underdeveloped and marginal to the tide of progress and prosperity.

International Sources

On Jammed Jets, Sardines Turn on One Another
Flying coach can be a bruising experience these days. Rory Rowland said he was rudely rebuffed after he asked the person in front of him not to recline his seat on a red-eye flight. When he later got up to use the bathroom, and the other passenger had fallen asleep, “I hip-checked his seat like you wouldn’t believe,” Mr. Rowland, a speaker and consultant, said, then feigned innocence when the enraged passenger complained to a flight attendant. With air travelers increasingly feeling like packed sardines, flying has become a contact sport, nowhere more than over the reclined seat. Now, it is only getting worse, as airlines re-examine every millimeter of the cabin. Over the last two decades, the space between seats — hardly roomy before — has fallen about 10 percent, from 34 inches to somewhere between 30 and 32 inches. Today, some airlines are pushing it even further, leaving only a knee-crunching 28 inches. To gain a little more space, airlines are turning to a new generation of seats that use lighter materials and less padding, moving the magazine pocket above the tray table and even reducing or eliminating the recline in seats. Some are even reducing the number of galleys and bathrooms.

Failure to maintain highway network could cost Belize US$3.3bn
Failure to invest in the maintenance of Belize's road network could cost the country US$3.3bn.

2013: A Year of Lost Opportunities for Caribbean Countries
2013 was not a good year for any of the 14 independent member States of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) -– not even for three of the four commodity-exporting nations Belize, Guyana and Suriname, despite their economic growth. The fourth commodity-exporting country, Trinidad and Tobago, had no growth to speak-of. All the countries were beset by high unemployment; there was high debt in 10 of them; decline in inclusive economic growth in 11 of them; unsustainable fiscal deficits and widening trade deficits in goods and services in all of them; and foreign exchange losses in many of them. Additionally, bank lending and private spending tightened in 11 of them causing a contraction in the private sector to which all countries had been looking to lead economic recovery in the wake of cash-strapped governments being compelled to retreat as both investor and employer.

These Disturbingly Creative Snowmen Would Make Calvin And Hobbes Proud
Bill Watterson's classic comic strip always took an extra sharp turn for the weird around the season's first snowfall. And although there hasn't been a new "Calvin and Hobbes" printed in the last twenty or so years, Calvin's mischievous spirit has quite clearly lived on. Without further ado, here are some of the strangest snowmen to grace the cold, white earth.

Christmas Deluge Brings Disaster to Eastern Caribbean
Colleen James arrived in St. Vincent and the Grenadines from Canada two days before Christmas hoping to enjoy the holiday season with her family. Now she's getting ready to bury her two-year-old daughter and 18-year-old sister. "I never do nothing wrong. I always do good," a dazed James told IPS as she looked out across the flood damage occasioned by a slow-moving low-level trough that brought torrential rains, death and destruction not only to St. Vincent and the Grenadines but St. Lucia and Dominica.3 Disaster officials have so far recovered nine bodies and the search continues for three more people reported missing and feared dead. In St. Lucia, five people were killed, including Calvin Stanley Louis, a police officer who died after a wall fell on him as he tried to assist people who had become stranded by the floods. The trough system resulted in 171.1 mm of rainfall within a 24-hour period ending at 8.50 a.m. on Dec. 25.

By Abdulmajeed K. Nunez In the 60s Belize was said to be richer than Kuwait I’m trying to get the record straight Mexico and Guatemala are Belize’s beneficiaries It is we who have been building their economies We have light sweet crude Our leaders should be sued There was a time when Belize extended deep North and south Of its boarder as a matter of fact Henry Fearweather Surveyed the Chetumal border Well I vex Why didn’t our government make an agreement with Pemex Or was that so complex? Mexico is the fifth largest oil producer Located not too far from our border Wouldn’t life have been much easier? If we could pay five dollars a gallon for fuel like our neighbour Belize was the region’s leader Until Uncle Sam became the puppet master Bring Central Banks to the Diaspora Controlling our leaders and tell us how, when and where to spend our dollars