Businesses report problems accessing US dollars
Earlier this week, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) launched a poll to canvass its membership on whether they have been experiencing problems sourcing foreign exchange. The poll was triggered by several concerns expressed by members who said that they had been affected by limited or no access to foreign exchange, and in particular, to US currency. The wider membership has since been asked to submit responses by this Friday, November 4, stating whether they have been affected and if so, to specify the currency they have had problems accessing.
Amandala understands that companies who are in both the merchandising trade and services sectors are being polled at this time.
Vital Statistics birth certificate scam?
A Belizean woman from the village of Progresso in the Corozal District is distraught after her birth certificate was allegedly listed by the Vital Statistics Unit as one of the documents in a purported identity scam.
According to Jazminie Lino, 29, she went to the Vital Statistics Unit today, Thursday, to apply for her birth certificate and those of her children.
While she was able to get those documents belonging to her children, she was prevented from getting hers because her identity has been linked to that of a Mexican woman.
Taxpayers forced to pay $13,000 to victim of Orange Walk police brutality
Policemen with no regard for the constitutional rights of citizens continue to cost taxpayers many thousands of dollars in court awards and legal settlements. On Tuesday in the Supreme Court of Madam Justice Sonya Young, attorney Kareem Musa reached an out-of-court settlement with a government attorney in a case of police brutality in Orange Walk that was captured on video and uploaded to social media—displaying the abuse inflicted by police officers on the man at his home.
In the claim filed by Andres Rodriguez against the Attorney General of Belize, named the first defendant; the Commissioner of Police, second defendant; PC Marcial Ramirez, third defendant; PC Edward Swift, fourth defendant; and PC Shawn Chin, the fifth defendant, the evidence of police brutality was overwhelmingly convincing.
Faithful Belizean Cubbies celebrate World Series win!
When the ball settled into the glove of first baseman Anthony Rizzo from a throw by third baseman Kris Bryant off a Michael Martinez slow roller into the infield, Chicago Cubs fans went wild with joy, and that included long-suffering Cubs fans in Belize, who had “adopted” the Chicago Cubs since the early 1980s, when all they watched were Cubs games, and when the Cubs star outfielder Gary Matthews, Sr., came to Belize in the winter of 1985.
After Matthews’ visit, the Cubs almost instantly gained practically a whole country of Cubs-mad fans.
In Cleveland Indians’ Progressive Field, the Chicago Cubs shattered their 108-year championship drought with an 8-7, 10-inning World Series victory over the Cleveland Indians in Game 7 after causing consternation when in the 9th inning, the Indians leveled the playing field by tying the score 6-6.
Cop detained in connection with bullet-riddled body found on Boom Road
On Monday morning, a passerby saw a body on the ground riddled with bullets and called police, who removed the body and several expended shells from the scene at the junction of the Burrell Boom/Hattieville Road.
The body was later identified as Jeon Peebles, 25, a Belize City man whose family claims that he was in police custody on Sunday night for marijuana possession.
Last night, Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams confirmed that a police officer was detained and is being questioned in connection with the apparent homicide of Peebles.
Williams told 7News, “Yes, we have one officer in custody who we believe was one of the officers who picked him up. That information, though, is yet to be confirmed and the allegation that you’re saying, is that two officers did pick up him.”
Animal Planet’s Monsters Inside Me looks at flesh-eating leishmaniasis in Belize
The UK-based Daily Mail is reporting that a new episode of Animal Planet to air this Thursday on The Discovery Channel will feature the story of a retired US firefighter who contracted a flesh-eating parasite while at his vacation home in Belize. Without treatment, the infection—cutaneous leishmaniasis, caused by a protozoa, a single-celled organism—can prove fatal, the report warned.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), cutaneous leishmaniasis usually produces ulcers on the exposed parts of the body, such as the face, arms and legs. It adds that there may be a large number of lesions—sometimes up to 200—which can cause serious disability. Notably, when the ulcers heal, they invariably leave permanent scars, which are often the cause of serious social prejudice, WHO explains.
Whereas Belize’s Director of Health Services, Dr. Marvin Manzanero, has indicated that he does not know of the case in question, involving Mark Ward of Prescott, Arizona, and his wife Janina, he has indicated that leishmaniasis has been reported in Belize—as in most tropical countries—and soldiers of the Belize Defence Force (BDF) or others out in the forest/jungle are most particularly at risk. In fact, cases have been reported among British soldiers who have been in Belize’s jungles.
Belizean cyclists dominate in Chetumal, Mexico
The third annual “Carrera de la Frontera Sur” was held in Chetumal, Mexico this past Sunday, October 30. Most of the big Belizean teams were present: C-Ray, Benny’s Megabytes, Smart, Digicell, Santino’s, Cabral/Marin Cycling, Marie Sharp.
Belizeans placed top-three in the Junior category. Team Marie Sharp took the first and third spots on the podium, with Darien Anderson winning and Patrick Williams in third position. Smart’s Kaydine Pinelo was second. The trio got away from the peloton, and were able to hold them off until the final lap.
In the Female race, eleven cyclists lined up – three of which were Belizeans. National Road Champion, Kaya Cattouse of the C-Ray Cycling Club, was in a break-away from the first lap with Mexican Wendy Maldonado Molina. After the 26-mile race, including 10 laps on the circuit, Cattouse finished solo. Molina finished in second place, and Belizean Alicia Thompson of Belize Bank Swoosh rounded out the top three.
Cubs win! And Belizeans celebrate!
There are quite a few Dodgers fans in Belize, and also Giants fans and Yankee fans, and others; but, ever since television arrived in Belize in the early 1980’s with WGN Channel 9 the main station, featuring broadcaster Harry Caray’s Chicago Cubs, large numbers of Belizean baseball fans have been hooked on the ritual cycle of hope and disappointment dished out religiously, year after heartbreaking year, by the never quite good enough, Cubbies. Belizean fans, by and large, were of Harry Caray’s mold, “die hard,” always believing that one day, one fine day, Cubs would be World Champions.
Well, that day is here; last night, actually, as the Chicago Cubs finally ended the 108-year drought since the 1908 Cubs won the World Series. They beat the Cleveland Indians, 8-7, in game 7, after being down 3 games to 1 in the best-of-7 series. And we just had to share the adjacent article with the many jubilant Cubs fans among our readership.
Belize Bank Bulldogs 3-peat as Charles Solis Memorial Softball Champions
There were only 3 teams participating in this year’s 8th Annual Charles Solis Memorial Invitational Softball Tournament, which took place on Sunday, October 23, at Rogers Stadium. The competition was nevertheless intense and when it was over, the Belize Bank Bulldogs, who won 3 of their 4 games in the double round-robin, out-scored 2nd place winners, Unitedville Rebels, 6-3, were crowned champions for the third straight time.
At the end of the round-robin phase, both the Bulldogs and the Rebels had similar records of 3 wins and 1 loss, while Independence PALS was winless with a 0 and 4 record. By the ground rule agreed upon by the teams, “in the case of a tie, the runs for and against for the two teams tied would be used to determine the winner. As such Belize Bank Bulldogs outscored Unitedville Rebels, 6-3, and were thus declared champion.
Editorial: When the PM overstepped
If Belize were to change to the system of proportional representation, and were Kremandala then, for argument’s sake, to present candidates as a political party, the electoral performances of Evan X Hyde in Collet in 1974 and Rufus X in Belize Rural North in 1989 suggest that Kremandala would gain at least 4 percent of the votes cast.
In a system of proportional representation, were the teachers of Belize to present candidates as a political party, the chances are the teachers would gain as much as that 4 percent, and probably more.
The way our present first-past-the-post political system has worked, it has produced two major political parties – the ruling United Democratic Party (UDP) and the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP). These two organizations, which have controlled, monopolized political power and public funds in Belize since 1961 to the present, are “big tent” in philosophy in the sense that they include individuals and groups with major differences in political and economic philosophy under the one party tent, under the one party banner.
From the Publisher
When Amandala and the UBAD Party came to Partridge Street from 46 Euphrates Avenue in the latter part of 1972, conditions were really primitive. Ismail Omar Shabazz, the secretary/treasurer of UBAD, had leased adjoining swamp lots on Partridge from the Government of Belize back in 1969, shortly after UBAD was founded. One lot was for UBAD, and the lot on our left was for Shabazz. Our old Chandler & Price letter press, along with the lead type and the trays which held them, were squeezed inside Shabazz’s mechanic shop on his lot. UBAD was trying its best to complete a 20’ x 30’, one flat ferro-concrete building on its land. I remember mosquitoes used to kill our lady typesetters on Thursday nights, paper nights. I can see Gilda Samuels Leslie even now.
Everything west of Collet Canal and north of Pound Yard/Cemetery Road was considered Lake Independence back then. The man Lester Smith, known by various nicknames, such as “Bailar”, “Experience,” “Kid,” “Sundance”, and whatever, was a muscular butcher in the old Central Market who was one of the first residents of Mayflower Street. To the best of my knowledge, it was he who organized the young men of this new Lake area into a senior football team which was called, of course, Lakers.
“But this I’ll say openly, that Hattie was the worst in our history”
Monday, October 31, marked 55 years since an event that changed the course of history in many ways of the then colony of British Honduras. The year was 1961; that event was a category five hurricane by the name of Hattie.
Belize had been hit in 1931 by a strong hurricane and the number of lives lost was over 2,500. The loss was great because there was very little warning. The hurricane struck on September 10, a day when the “natives” were out commemorating the Battle of St. George’s Caye. The then governor of the colony refused to warn the citizens, since in his mind the common folks were relieving the stress of a very hard life in the colony.
Six years before Hattie, Hurricane Janet did great damage to Corozal and Chetumal (Payo-Bispo). There was much more warning for Hattie, although many did not heed the warnings.
Suffering in silence doesn’t get you closer to heaven!
It must have been around 1971 or so, that I found myself waiting around the Cement Masons Union Hall in Santa Cruz,California, waiting for my number to be called so I could put food on the table. Having recently received a Bachelor’s university degree, and with the voter registration wars in the deep south still fresh memories, I needed to make a living — plain and simple.
Burned-out with academia and tired of sitting behind a desk, I enjoyed the immediate gratification at the end of the work day that comes from doing a measurable task (“product” not “process”) with a handful of other like-minded men, and surveying our accomplishment while having an ice-cold beer. Pouring concrete is hard work, but I always thought of it as “invigorating toil.”
Sitting next to me at the Union Hall on another of the many folding chairs strewn around the place, was a grizzled older black man who, judging from his accent, was from somewhere in the South, Louisiana maybe, or Mississippi. We made small talk, and I happened to be riffing on how Santa Cruz sure was changing with the rapid growth of the university and influx of new people, whereas until quite recently it had been home to many generations of Italian fishermen.
Chriss Roggema writes Prime Minister Barrow
Please publish this open letter to Prime Minister Dean Barrow for me.
Dear Mr. Prime Minister,
I saw a video interview with you which made me feel very uncomfortable as a Caye Caulker resident, and that feeling won’t blow over as a lil’ breeze. Even if I am not a young man anymore, I feel I am obliged to participate in the democratic political process (even if I am not a lawyer) because of my four young sons who were born here on Caye Caulker, who love the sea and the reef and love to fish.
Most fishermen might not dare to address you or maybe can’t find the words allowed for publication when they express their feelings concerning the fact that GOB still might consider oil exploration in the waters outside our coast, even close to the Blue Hole. Did our voices not reach your ears or your heart after the people’s “referendum” about oil exploration? Just because it was not arranged by the GOB? Since you say there is so little money to spend on the democratic process, maybe we should use that money on a referendum for more than only this question, at the same time.
2016 murder count already exceeds 2015’s
The Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Home Affairs, George Lovell, has confirmed to Amandala the tragic news that the 2016 murder count has already exceeded the count for the year 2015. Last Tuesday, Lovell reported that 115 homicides had been reported for the year to date. During last week, there was one murder on San Pedro, pushing the number up to 116. Then over the weekend, four more murders were reported, pushing the number to 120. The year 2015 recorded 119 homicides, which represented a 2% decline from the 2014 figure.
Lovell said that the state of crime is a matter of concern for the new minister of state with responsibility for police, Elodio Aragon, Jr.
“Some time next week, we have intention to do some media rounds, to lay down what our new minister of state’s plans are to address some of the concerns that he has and the entire nation has as it relates to not just major crimes but in particular corruption,” Lovell told us.
RIP, Lucky Boy
The staff of the Belize Zoo is mourning the loss of their beloved black jaguar, Lucky Boy. One of the zoo’s most iconic animals, the staff had to euthanize him early this morning, because his deteriorated health made it inhumane to keep him alive. He […]
First-ever renewable energy fair being planned
Several regional and international organizations are coming together to hold Belize’s first renewable energy fair. The Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) in partnership with the Japan Caribbean Climate Change Partnership (J-CCCP) and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), are collaborating for the fair, which […]
Belize dodges $90 million bullet
The Supreme Court of Belize spared the country’s economy a US $90 million loss when it ruled in favor of the Government of Belize for nationalizing the International Merchant Marine Registry (IMMARBE) and the International Business Companies Registry (ICB). Justice Michele Arana ruled that the […]
Belizean students excel in 2016 CXC
Students from St. Johns College and SJ Junior College topped this year’s Caribbean Secondary Examination Certificate (CSEC) and Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) for Belize. Rhiki Alegria,16, of SJC ranked as the country’s top scorer in CSEC, earning 16 grade one, one grade two and […]
House Speaker vs Auditor General court battle begins
Speaker of the House of Representatives, Michael Peyrefitte went to court this week, for case management in his civil suit against the Auditor General, Dorothy Bradley. Attorney Marilyn Williams is representing Peyrefitte, while the office of the Attorney General, in accordance with the laws of […]
To pre-empt Cancer epidemic GOB plans vaccine for pre-teen girls
Female cervical cancer resulting from Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) infection is on the rise, prompting the World Health Organization (WHO) to recommend that countries with limited resources vaccinate all girls of 9-13 years of age against the virus. Acting on this advice, the Ministries of Health and Education and Youth […]
Man accused of raping woman
Dangriga police have arrested and charged Aldrick Alvarez, a 36-year-old resident of Silk Grass village, Stann Creek with ‘rape’ and ‘sexual assault’ following a report by a young woman that he forcibly had sexual intercourse with her. The 24 year-old woman, a resident of Hopkins […]
Minister’s daughter involved in highway accident
Stacey Martinez, the daughter of Minister of Human Development, Social Transformation and Poverty Alleviation, Anthony “Boots” Martinez, was involved in a traffic accident on the George Price Highway on Wednesday evening. Martinez was not seriously injured, but the vehicles were so extensively damaged that it […]
What about the Prevention of Corruption Act?
By Alexis R. Milan Editor Next Wednesday Belize will officially sign on to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC), the world’s first legally binding international anti-corruption instrument. It is even being heralded by many as a great triumph for Belize’s democracy and the fight against corruption. Legal experts from […]
Political rivals mend fences following heated verbal dispute
Two political rivals, Douglas Grant, Jr., and Paul Ferguson, this week shook hands and settled their differences publicly after they were involved in a heated verbal dispute in front of the Sit and Sip nightclub sometime after 3:00 on Sunday morning. The incident could have […]
CARICOM holds regional consultation on Human Resource Development
Representatives from the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) visited Belize this week to meet with various stakeholders to help draft a regional Human Resource Development action plan. CARICOM held the consultations at the Best Western Belize Biltmore Plaza, and met with entities such as the Ministry of Human Development, […]
Taiwan helps Belize citrus farmers fight Huanglongbing
Belizean citrus growers, Justino Chiac of Maya Mopan Village on the Southern Highway and Gilbert Galvez of Ringtail Village on the Hummingbird Highway, are learning to control the Huanglongbing (HLB) disease, known as citrus greening, which is so detrimental to citrus orchards, through the technical support of project funded by […]
PUP’s Dr. Mendez walks free of sexual assault charges
Some 21 months after he was charged with six counts of ‘aggravated assault of an indecent nature’ and ‘unlawful carnal knowledge’ upon two female minors, the People’s United Party’s (PUP) former Orange Walk East Area Representative, Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez, has been acquitted of the […]
Mentally ill man ran over by bus in Corozal
A 22 year-old mentally ill man was knocked down and killed by a Morales bus on Monday night in Corozal Town. According to reports, Javier Luis Chan was in the process of stealing a license plate off a parked vehicle when the alarm went off and […]
The November rains have arrived and with them, the seasonal high tide. When this happens water from the sea pushes up in the river and into our canals, shutting down the drainage system. When the tide goes down the drainage system kicks in once more and surface water from the […]
Cops investigate cop for murder
Police are investigating one of their own in connection with the murder of Belize City resident, 25-year-old Jeon Peebles. Assistant Commissioner of Police Chester Williams told the media on Wednesday that the Department has one officer detained for questioning in relation to Peebles’ death. Williams […]
Cubs win! Belize celebrates
The Chicago Cubs baseball team, which has since the early 1980’s had some deeply rooted fans in Belize, closed a 108-year world series losing drought on Wednesday when it edged out the Cleveland Indians by a score of 8-7. The seventh and final game was […]
Shorter Christmas and Easter for students, MOE says
Students will have shorter Christmas and Easter vacations, to make up for the days lost due to recent strike action from the Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) The Ministry of Education announced this week that it arrived at a formula for making up the lost […]
Breaking Belize News
One year later- Greater days still ahead
Exactly one year ago, on November 4, 2015, the UDP was re-elected to office and Dean Barrow became Belize’s first Prime Minister to secure a third consecutive term. That in itself was a major accomplishment, for such a clear re-endorsement (19 out of 31 […]
Vega and Pitts given thirty days to repay
The government issued a press release this evening informing the public that as a result of the findings of the investigation into the matter concerning Sharon Pitts and Andre Vega, letters were sent to both persons on 31st October, 2016 demanding the repayment to […]
Belize- Mexico Identity theft scheme?
There seems to be another major scandal brewing in another government agency. There are allegations that a woman from Corozal applied for her birth certificate at the registry department in Belize City but was denied the document. According to the infuriated woman, her birth […]
Belama police station dilapidated
Residents in the Belama phase two area of Belize City have raised concerns to BBN over the lack of security they now feel in their community because of the condition of the police station in the area. According to them Precinct 4 of the […]
Flash flooding across highway in Central Farm
This evening heavy rains in Cayo district caused localized flooding in some areas. At the Baking Pot junction in Central Farm there was 6 to 8 inches of water across the George Price Highway about 4:30 pm slowing down traffic a bit. Drivers are […]
“ Yochi” focuses on endangered parrots in Belize
Robert Dugan, cinematographer, left, and Ilana Lapid, director, work on a scene from “Yochi,” in western Belize. (Courtesy Of Ilana Lapid) Albuquerque Journal “Yochi” a fascinating story filmed by a New Mexico State University professor, Ilana Lapid, will be featured on opening night film […]
Gary Sewell freed after fighting extradition to the U.S.
Gary Sewell is today a free man. Sewell had been fighting extradition since 2010. In October of 2014, Sewell, accused of drug trafficking lost his fight to avoid extradition to the U.S. state of Ohio. There he faces conspiracy and drug-related charges. Sewell is […]
Belize in the film festival spotlight
The Belize International Film Festival’s 11th edition will showcase a number of selections that address important societal themes. There are many countries being represented at the festival; however, there will be a feature of events and selections that put Belize in the spotlight. These […]
Lucky Boy, Famous Black Jaguar at the Belize Zoo passes away
The Belize Zoo has issued a statement announcing that Lucky Boy, the famous black jaguar has passed away. “The Belize Zoo sadly announces that our beloved black jaguar, Lucky Boy, has passed away. We struggled for over two weeks to provide care and medical […]
Belize to hold 1st B2B Waste to Energy and Renewable Energy Fair
The Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) in partnership with the GIZ, the Japan Caribbean Climate Change Partnership (J-CCCP) and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), is hosting Belize’s First B2B Waste to Energy and Renewable Energy Fair at the Belize Biltmore Plaza, in […]
Bert Vasquez trial starts December 9
Bert Vasquez became one of the most disliked personalities in recent Belizean history after he was charged in connection with the abduction and murder of Jasmine Lowe in 2012. However, he is facing more heat for another instance in which he allegedly abducted and […]
Moist weather is expected to prevail
The 24 hour forecast is for cloudy skies with a few showers and isolated thunderstorms. Showers or thunderstorms are expected across the country and will increase over the coast and the south tonight. The wind will blow from the northeast at 5 to 15 […]
What are we Preserving?
If you have been following the news this has been a hot topic in many respects – environmentally, politically and personally.
The Barrier Reef is extremely fragile and so many people agree seismic testing is risky business and would put the reef in danger. The process involves airguns to blast shock-waves to penetrate the sea bottom. This is not healthy for the marine ecosystem and can disrupt animal migration, communication and even cause deafness.
More than half of Belize’s population 366,942 people, are supported through tourism and fishing related income. It is not worth jeopardizing our most precious natural resource which provides the country with long range economic development and a thriving tourist based industry.
Last year (2015) Belize received 1.3 million travelers and overnight arrivals were up 6.2%. Southwest and COPA Airlines’ flights to Belize brought a 7% increase in airport arrivals. If we want to keep increasing our numbers, oil exploration and ultimately oil drilling in our jewel should not be done.
The following article was a submission I wrote for for BTIA Destination Belize Magazine. It is geared towards first time travelers and a great reminder of all the wonderful things we stand to lose by allowing oil drilling. We need to give people who have not seen our precious jewel yet the opportunity to do so and for those that have the chance to keep on loving it.
8 Posts that Will Make You Want to Visit Ambergris Caye SOON
I started blogging in June of 2011! And during the last five PLUS years, I have just over 1500 posts – some that have been read tens of thousands of times (like those on how I moved here) and about my (very calculated) run-in with the TV Show “The Bachelor” and others that well…are best left to the deep black hole that is the internet. Here are eight posts that I hope inspire newbies to visit Ambergris Caye (and Belize) as well as perk up those living here as the high season is just on the horizon and cooler breezes start to blow in.
Belize Cruise: 7 Things You Wont Experience On One
Cruise tourism has been a trend for the last few decades, and certainly a growing one in Belize. We can see why; weeks on a big ship at sea with all the large hotel amenities floating along with you, it’s difficult not to be at the very least curious.
There’s always something going on in the many lounges and theaters of these sea vessels which serves to say that the main attraction is the ship itself and not the many destinations at which it makes port. That said; you’re stopping in Belize, and for the time being Belize city‘s “Tourist Village” is the first thing you’ll get to see of land when you dock. Sure, they make inland tours available to you, as well as sea tours, however, there is still much you’re going to miss when stepping out of a crowded bus or packed up skiff.
Here are just A Few of the things you’d miss if you’re on a Belize Cruise:
1. An Authentic Belizean “Hello.“
2. The most adventurous moments.
3. Souvenirs with personality.
4. Pristine Belizean landscapes.
5. Cuisine prepared with love.
6. Charming Belizean communities.
7. A sense of belonging.
Game day TV blackout got real on Ambergris Caye during Game 7 of the World Series
The national baseball team of the country of Belize is the Chicago Cubs.
This is no bandwagon country. Belize has been Cubs Country since the 1980’s when cable television was first introduced here.
The story, which is solidly embraced by everyone, is that the first channel to be re-broadcast here was WGN, home of the Cubs and I believe, the Chicago Bulls, also a local fan favorite.
For years, these were the only professional sports teams available to the country, which gained its independence from England in 1983 and still carries the image of the queen on its paper money. The Cubs gained a real foothold in the imagination of Belizeans. It was underdogs rooting for underdogs.
Pirating a broadcast signal in those days apparently wasn’t as easy to do as it is today.
That’s right. This is still pirate country.
One of the unshakable beliefs of Belize is that the country’s one cable content distributor steals his channels from the US. This would explain why our PBS channel comes from Detroit while our network channels rotate periodically between Los Angeles, Chicago and New York City. (Currently they are from New York and we love the ads for Broadway shows.)
Little Kitchen Dogs
These are the two fuzzy dogs who live behind Little Kitchen restaurant. Normally they intimidate me a bit but this evening they were very mellow and even sleeping until I went all paparazzi on them. The darkness and flash make them look a bit spooky.
Island Beach Wedding at Las Terrazas, Belize
Ambr & Jason decided to tie the knot in beautiful Belize and they choose as their destination one of the best resorts from entire country, Las Terrazas Beach Resort, North Ambergris Caye, Belize.
Their day was filled with laughter, family love and emotions. I consider myself blessed and I am grateful for being able to capture this special day.
Ambergris Caye is fantastic and Las Terrazas, simply amazing!
The Soundtrack of Life
Perhaps the most beautiful demonstration of this statement can be found in the music of his people, the Garinagu, one of the many cultures that make up the melting pot that is Belize. Product of the indigenous Arawaks of South America and shipwreck prisoners destined for slavery, the Garinagu claim St. Vincent as their homeland. Forceful exodus from the Caribbean lead to Central American settlements in Honduras, Guatemala and Belize.. Throughout migratory pathways, the Garinagu have continued to use music in daily life and work to retell their story from elder to younger generation, to diminish the boredom of everyday chores, to accompany sacred rituals that maintain intergenerational bonds and to recreate a sense of shared identity despite borders.
The main instrument used in Garifuna music that requires musical accompaniment is the drum. Traditionally these drums were made from a hollowed out trunk of hardwood, covered with animal skin usually a deer, peccary or sheep which was stretched over the trunk and tightened with rope and wooden pegs and they were always played solely with the hands. Today the design is very much the same, although the hollowing out is normally done with a machine rather than by hand. In the majority of everyday secular music, two drums are involved. The main and largest drum provides the bass and is known as the Segundo. Its namesake drummer provides the regular beat. The Primero drum is usually smaller and its player uses a more complicated pattern of beats and is considered the more skilled musician. In Garifuna rituals a third larger drum is used with the central instrument, the Lanigi Garawoun (the heart drum) providing the lead for the other two drummers.
It’s called the “Lechero” (español for Milk Run) but could just as easily be known as “The Supply Run” or “The Grocery Run.” If you’re looking out the window of one of our Cessna Caravans, you might call it the “Victoria Peak” or “Barrier Reef Run” or if you are visiting Belize, maybe just “part of my vacation”.
In aviation, the term milk run refers to a scheduled flight with many stops. In shipping or logistics, a milk run refers to a round trip that facilitates both distribution and collection, similar to the way a milkman used to deliver and pick up around the neighborhoods of old. It also refers to the dairy industry practice of picking up from different suppliers – when one truck collects milk from several farmers for delivery to a central location. For our flights, all these definitions seem to fit, and so the nickname has stuck.
Ancient Maya king had a luxury pleasure palace outside the city he ruled
“Lying in a hammock in your courtyard on a mountaintop, being fanned by servants, perhaps is more pleasant at certain times of year than life in your (city) palace,” says Susan Toby Evans of Pennsylvania State University, who wasn’t involved in the discovery.
But the site, known as Bejucal, was not always about relaxation. Long before it was a place to get away from it all, it was a sacred center dotted with temples, the researchers report in the Journal of Field Archaeology. At one temple, a sacrificed baby was buried, a Maya ritual for consecrating a holy space, says Thomas Garrison of the University of Southern California, who led the Bejucal excavations.
Over centuries, a grand palace complex took shape atop the temples. In the end, Bejucal included two courtyards, each bordered by a pyramid and residential rooms. The ruins of one palace held bits of ceramic painted with colorful designs associated with royalty, objects fit for a king’s household.
Country of Belize invites Cubs' David Ross on free vacation
To celebrate the historic World Series win, the nation of Belize—the biggest Cubs fanbase outside the Windy City—just offered David Ross an all-expenses-paid vacation.
The country extended the invite through a Belizean version video of “Go Cubs Go.” After 15 seasons, and admitting “he’s totally exhausted” after Game 7, Ross deserves a little relaxtion and the Belize Tourism Board wants to help.
Belize has a long history of cheering for the Cubs. Since 1981, it’s been known to be the most Cubs-friendly place outside Chicago due to WGN being one of the only channels available in the country.
You can read more about Belize’s history of Cubs fandom here.
While Chicagoans dyed their river blue to celebrate, Belizeans are sharing the excitement by the pristine blue ocean.
Grolier Codex ruled genuine: what the oldest manuscript to survive Spanish conquest reveals
The Maya were, at their height, one of the world’s great civilisations. In the “classic” period, from AD 250–900, Maya cities with monumental architecture and huge populations spread across a large area through what is now Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and western Honduras. Extensive trade networks connected the Maya to the rest of Mesoamerica, producing the dynamic landscapes and bustling ports reported in early Spanish accounts.
Much of what we know of the Maya comes from codices – screenfold books made of paper from the bark of a fig tree. Pages were coated in a white stucco wash and then painted by scribes with text, which was often accompanied by images. The Spanish in the 16th century reported a flourishing manuscript tradition comprising histories, prophecies, songs, genealogies and detailed information on the movements of the heavenly bodies.
Of the thousands of books produced throughout the Mayas’ long history, however, only three Maya codices were known to have survived, all written in the “postclassic” period after AD 900 and brought to Europe sometime after the conquest. They are named after the cities where they were archived: Dresden, Madrid, and Paris. Now, after years of debate over its authenticity, we can add a fourth manuscript – the Grolier Codex.
Some regional central bank banks turn to SWIFT to combat de-risking threat
Eight regional central banks have signed up to adopt the sanctions screening service and Know Your Customer (KYC) Registry provided by the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) in an effort to combat the threat posed to the region by de-risking measures imposed in correspondent banking relationships.
The trend of de-risking – the decision taken by international banks partially or fully to exit certain jurisdictions, product domains and currencies by exiting their foreign correspondent banking relationships – has been pervasive in the Caribbean and Latin America.
By taking up SWIFT's financial crime compliance services, the central banks of Belize, Bolivia, Costa Rica, Curacao, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Haiti and Paraguay, hope to enhance transparency and build greater trust with the international financial community, mitigating the threat of being disconnected by their foreign counterparts.
In addition to adopting the KYC Registry themselves, some of the central banks have also endorsed the uptake of the services across their entire jurisdictions, doubling the number of regional institutions adopting SWIFT’s financial crime compliance tools over the past 12 months.
The Belize Defence Force, 1min. Be Proud. Be Belizean.
Kanantik Resort, 1.5min.
Belize dive, 3min. Lighthouse reef
NORWEGIAN GETAWAY - DAY 4, 7min. Zip lining through the rain forest and cave tubing brings out our inner Steve Irwin in Belize.
INSANE FISHING IN BELIZE, 11min.
Sun setting in Belize, 1/2min. Time lapse video of sun setting over Ambergris Caye, Belize.
Big Signs along shore in PG, 5min.
My Trip to Belize! Part 1, 27min. Watch me discover an amazing culture in a foreign country!
My Trip to Belize! Part 2, 22min.
Belize 2015 VIU, 4.5min. Some video taking by LG on the 2015 Belize field school, organized by Professional Baking and Pastry Arts program at Vancouver Island University.