my folks are in visiting, but that's not it. they left a magazine here on frank's desk called AARP's modern maturity. the interesting part was a listing of the top 15 places to retire outside of the U.S.. not that it would be any surprise to any of us, but AC was #9. here's what they said:
"#9 - ambergris caye, belize
you can enjoy the balmy breezes and 80* temps of this splendid little island off the coast of central america even if you don't dive or snorkel. one of the caribbean's premier tax havens, bz has strict bank secrecy laws, and in many cases doesn't tax retirement income. other foreigner-friendly factors that earned good grades: inexpensive (tho limited) healthcare, many doctors are US trained, a low crime rate, and ubiquitous english. you can apply for bz's retirement residency program if you receive at least $1000 monthly from social security, pensions, or annuities. among the benefits: you can bring in a car without paying duty. if you drive an SUV, you may have to downsize, as the primary ways to get around are by foot, bike, or golf cart. a one-bedroom condo near the sea runs about $100,000 a pop; condos on the lagoon are less. rating: 45 out of 60 points"*
*grading is as follows - 5 points for each of 12 catagories - weather, cost of living, affordable housing, cultural programs, healthcare, leisure activities, pollution, crime rate, transportation, political stability, health hazzards, and access to technology.
nothing we didn't already know, but it is great to hear it. (i hope no one else hears it tho! shhhhh.)