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#51920 - 04/24/02 02:19 PM Trip Report - Part 2 (week of April 13th)  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 266
Seaislegal Offline
Seaislegal  Offline
Trip Report Part 2

Thursday – My boyfriend and the other divers got up and left at 5:30am as they were doing a full day dive out at Turneffe. The other 7 of us were getting picked up at 8:15 to go do the Catamaran trip with Hustler. They picked us up, then made a few other stops to pick up more folks before we got to their dock. We got our snorkel gear and boarded the Catamaran. It was different from the Cats I was used too as the middle is all trampoline with cushions on it. So you can get wet if you pick the wrong spot to sit and the water splashes up between the cushions. Best place to sit is on the front end as there was less splashing on that half. We went first to Hol Chan where they took us in two groups snorkeling. At one point when we were snorkeling, some divers were down below and scared a Moray Eel out of its cave, it was swimming around with its big teeth showing so I prepared to take a photo, then it turned and started swimming up right at me!! Needless to say I freaked and luckily got my fins down where I could bat it out the way. Everyone else around me scattered pretty quick. It was nerve wracking but funny too. Back on the cat we headed over to Caye Caulker and the beers and rum punch started flowing. It was a nice ride over there. Caye Caulker is a small island but really quaint. We docked at this one hotel, (Tropical Paradise or something like that) there was a bit iguana sunning himself by one of the cabins. Some of us ate lunch at the restaurant right there while others took a walk down the main street to try somewhere else. Turns out that Rasta Pasta I have seen mentioned on the boards is there now. I wish I’d known that, I ate at the restaurant they dropped us off at but it was good at least. A couple of our other friends ate at Rasta Pasta and said it was fabulous, so I know where to try over there next year ! we walked down the main street after lunch and did a little shopping, one shop down on the right had some pretty sundresses at real good prices so I got one of them and the requisite Beliken beer huggie! It was cheaper there than the ones back in SP town.

On the Cat, folks were partying on the way back, we stopped at Shark Ray but there weren’t that many sharks around this time. I was definitely glad I had gone on that separate snorkel trip back on Tuesday morning. They may get tired of folks in the afternoon, who knows!

The rest of the ride back to shore was party time with the rum punch and Belikens flowing freely, everyone was pretty tipsy by the time we got back to our docks. The Divers had got back ahead of us so were already cleaned up, we got showered too and headed into town. We went to El Patio for dinner, we werent too impressed. The service was real slow and the waitress didn’t seem to have much of a clue about what the dishes were. I asked here what grilled chicken delux was, and she replied delux grilled chicken.. not much! After dinner it was off to Jaguars for karaoke night where we met up with Tami and Josh again. My boyfriend and I got up and performed Love Shack and he later did Margaritaville, we had no idea they broadcast karaoke night over the local radio until some folks told us the next day!! It was fun though, my advice is to get there early if you want to sing as the requests pile up and they cut it off around midnight to crank the techno tunes. We ran into our friend Elito from Seaduced there, and also Cherlin, one of our bartenders at the Mata Rocks bar. Definitely a fun and amusing time though!

Friday – We made it into town for breakfast at Estels which was yummy. We discovered what Fry Cakes are (kind of a fried dough served with honey). We actually managed our first shopping that day, with a stop at the ice cream shop (Manellys I think) two doors down from Fidos. Its delicious, try one of their unique flavors like sugar corn or coconut, definitely a place to stop in. Also, right across from Fidos behind the Reef Garden bar (or some name along those lines painted on a surfboard) there is a little store tucked back where they will make these awesome clothes for you. They have some hanging on the racks so you can just wear a bathing suit under your clothes and try stuff on right there. They make these beautiful wrap pants, another type of palazzo pants, halter and other tops, swim skirts, shorts and more. If you don’t see anything you like on the rack, they have a big selection of beautiful material and can measure and make what you want in a day or so. Several of us got pants and tops, mine were a bit too long so they just measured and adjusted them the next day. My friend Wendy got a set made from a different material too! Wish I could recall the damn name of the place, run by two nice US women who have moved down there.

After the day in town we had to swing by the hyperbaric chamber and pick up a friend who had a bit of decompression sickness so had to be put in there for a few hours. Not a fun way to spend a day! He was soaked totally with sweat by the time he came out, but they had 4 people monitoring him including a doctor. San Pedro is one of the few places in Central America that has a chamber, so a safe place to dive and they take great care of you if you have any problems. We dropped him off at the hotel to shower up and spotted two of our lot, plus Ottzie and Gerry Ann buying raw chicken. So we followed them down to the water tower to watch them feed the crocodile, a big freaking enormous one we could only see about 6 feet of him out of the water! There were a bunch of other golf carts down there, turned out we knew about everyone so it was kind of funny! So definitely don’t swim on that side of the island down there! Dinner that night was at Fidos, the food was really tasty, so much so that our friend Dawn from Michigan ordered nachos for dessert! Some of us then headed over to Dockside, with a beer pitstop in Cholos, to catch the end of that night’s Jim Morris show. Tami and Josh caught up with us over there. Then it was back to Fidos for Barefoot Skinny again. We met Rick from the message boards while we were there as well. After dancing a while to Barefoot we got back on our golf carts and went down to BCs for a drink. We tried to hit Crazy Canucks after that but it was about mindnight and they were closed. We were still all raring to go at that point so ended up dancing at the Barefoot Iguana instead, a disco place across the street from where Canucks is.

Saturday – Our last full day on the island  My friends Wendy, Dawn and I went parasailing with Tony from Fidos. Tony is from Florida originally so very experienced and safe. It was an absolutely beautiful view of the island and ocean. You could see stingrays swimming down below, the whole island and lagoon, and even the mainland in the distance. Definitely something I’ll do again. They had this cool reggae music playing on the boat, Tony indicated it was a local Belizean group he knew and had their CDs for sale, so we all bought one. My boyfriend and I hit Mangos for lunch, its right on the beach at the lower end of Front Street. They had a great menu, enormous po boy sandwiches and cajun dishes, local Belizean fare, burgers and nachos. I got the grande nachos which were enormous and delicious, I felt like I ate a bunch but barely made a dent in the plateful! Frozen drinks were yummy too, they have a big tropical drink menu. The afternoon was lazing at our beach again. I used the float I had brought down yet again to just float and then wave the empty beer bottle in the air to get my boyfriend to bring another.. lol!! Definitely the way to go ! We headed to Ricos for their Saturday Barbeque dinner. IT includes soup, salad or dessert, and a big plate of BBQ, potato and corn. I got the pork chops which were just delicious. Others got seafood which they all enjoyed too. We then did a small beach crawl to Coconuts bar, the bartender Margie there was really cool. Lionel the woodcarver was siting at the bar chatting with some folks as well. Then we followed the music over to the Hideaway hotel bar. That Dennis White and his friend who had played at Palapa were playing there, and we recognized some nice locals we had met at BCs last weekend too. We danced until they closed, then Monte and I hung out talking to Dennis and also one of the owners who was behind the bar telling us stories of his military career.

Sunday – We packed up all of our belongings, headed down to Mata Rocks for some mimosas and so everyone could settle their bar tabs. Our friends Wendy and Joe were staying till Monday so actually had Monte and I talked into calling the airlines to try and stay the extra day. We tried, but no luck.. it would have been too expensive by a mile to change. Oh well, we know better for next year! We checked out, went to the airport checked our bags and headed over to BCs for one last BBQ lunch before we took our plane. In Belize City we got our duty free booze, they really have great prices there! Then hung out at Jets Bar until our flight was called. Jet is quite the character, he was working with his daughter there and they are both great sweet people. He was amazed when I told him I had heard about him over the internet (i.e., these boards) before I went down there. He had a unique way of pouring beer too, putting a plastic cup over the open Beliken bottom then flipping it upside down and it poured out perfectly! I expect we’ll waste a lot of beer trying to repeat that trick at home.

Overall an absolutely fabulous time. We already plan on heading back down the week of April 5th next year. Here are my bests..

Best restaurant – Caliente
Best Lunch – BCs BBQ on Sunday
Best Breakfast – Well, I only tried Estels and Ricos and they were both great!
Best beer – Beliken of course…!

For wordcarvings – Ask around for Lionel. Many of the ones in town are just pre-made and they just polish them up. Lionel is this older guy, usually walking around with a big bag of his carvings and he makes them all himself. The fact he offers to custom make stuff verifies that, along with some photos of his best creations of wooden pirate ships. Several of my friends bought some beautiful pieces from him. He can usually be found wondering around town and at the airport.

Thanks to Tim and the folks at Banana Beach who were the greatest!! They helped us out over the last year with our reservations, and unfortunately a few folks who had to cancel (they’ll be jealous they did after they see the photos!). They took the greatest care of us, booking our trips, ordering golf carts, cases of beer and such. Plus the hotel itself was beautiful! The rooms were impeccable and had great furnishings and amenities. They were in the process of building a new wing but the construction had no impact noise or otherwise and they are getting close to completion as even in the week we were there we could tell the changes and the paint and windows were going on. It should look great as soon as it is finished!

This trip was the greatest, we are planning on heading back the week of April 5th next year, hopefully with more friends in tow!

Andrea in Atlanta

Andrea in Atlanta
#51921 - 04/24/02 03:20 PM Re: Trip Report - Part 2 (week of April 13th)  
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 57
NJgirl Offline
NJgirl  Offline

After reading your trip report, I just want to be there so bad, I could cry! It's less than 7 weeks now, but it still seems like an eternity.

My boyfriend and I are staying at Mata Rocks... that much closer to the bar, I guess! Thanks again for writing with all the details, especially the cave tubing and the snorkeling. I'm ready!!

#51922 - 04/24/02 04:29 PM Re: Trip Report - Part 2 (week of April 13th)  
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 20
otzzie Offline
otzzie  Offline
Hi Andrea,
Just got back this afternoon from Atlantic City,NJ and read your trip reports. Reading them made me feel like we were back there enjoying every moment on the the island. Something about being there makes you just feel so laid-back and free. After coming back Saturday night, and leaving Monday morning on a business trip, it is very hard to deal with big city traffic after a week of driving a golf cart on narrow dirt roads. Somehow, I like those bummpy dirt roads better! GerryAnn and I agree with you about this being the best vacation ever. I am so glad that we decided on BananaBeach and got to meet all you guys. We just want to say "Thanks" for letting us be a part of your wonderful ParrotHead gang that we made new friends with at BananaBeach(you and Monty--Scott&Marie--Robin&Terri--Wendy--Dawn--Joe--Sosan, and of course finally meeting my long lost son, Dan, a/d/a Dave. What a hoot! I think that we will start dreaming about gojng back next year too.
Michael(Crock Teaser/Feeder) & GerryAnn(Barefoot Fluffie) in Tulsa.

#51923 - 04/25/02 04:44 PM Re: Trip Report - Part 2 (week of April 13th)  
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 124
Tami Offline
Tami  Offline
Hey Otzzie....what about me?? Did I not leave a lasting impression on ya'all?? Just kidding (kindof!) ha!

Hi to you and was nice to meet both of ya!

Tami (and Josh) [Linked Image]

#51924 - 04/28/02 09:27 AM Re: Trip Report - Part 2 (week of April 13th)  
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 20
otzzie Offline
otzzie  Offline
Hi Tami, how could we forget you guys dancing(on beach tables) at the Palapa Bar Sunday afternoon after BC's BBQ. I was earlier just going thru the whole BananaBeach crew and did not mean to foregt to mention you and Josh. We sure had a great time. Hope that we can do it again someday.

#51925 - 04/28/02 10:58 AM Re: Trip Report - Part 2 (week of April 13th)  
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 124
Tami Offline
Tami  Offline do remember! [Linked Image]

We had a great time too. So glad we got to meet so many fun people.

Oh, thanks again for getting the bag of chicken. You brought that 10 foot croc right out of the water. That was insane...but pretty cool!

We will all definitely have to do it again. I know the others are planning for April 5th, 2003. Maybe we could have.."The Return of the April Boarders!" lol. It would be fun!

Tami [Linked Image]

#51926 - 04/28/02 12:37 PM Re: Trip Report - Part 2 (week of April 13th)  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 266
Seaislegal Offline
Seaislegal  Offline
Actually it may be early may instead that we head back next year, thats when the rates drop and also when more of our friends can go (some work in the financial field so cant be gone around April 15th cause of Fiscal year ends).

Will let ya know shortly what week we are heading back, but we are heading back for SURE!!!!!

Andrea in Atlanta

Andrea in Atlanta
#51927 - 04/29/02 10:22 PM Re: Trip Report - Part 2 (week of April 13th)  
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 20
otzzie Offline
otzzie  Offline
Tami and Andrea,
Hey girls, GerryAnn and I got back from Jimmy's concert in Dallas last Thursday. The pre-party parking lot concert group was nuts as usualy, and all 70 of us Tulsa ParrotHeads were right there with them. All a bunch of party-fun people. Hard to belive a sell-out crowd of 30,000 people still go to a concert for a guy who has not had a hit song in 20 years, but, God, do we love him still. He did not have much of a back-round stage prop theme setup in Dallas,but who cares as longs as he sings "Cheeseburger". He did a few on his new songs,but everyone still wants to hear those old favorites. Hope you guys enjoy his concert when he comes to your towns in next few months.
Anyway,after a week back in the States, Belize feels like an old friend that is already starting to call me back.
Thanks for sharing the memories guys.

#51928 - 04/29/02 10:54 PM Re: Trip Report - Part 2 (week of April 13th)  
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 124
Tami Offline
Tami  Offline
Glad you guys had a great time at the concert! We here in Southern California have to wait until October 5th to see him. [Linked Image] We have tickets and are already planning the pre-party parking lot festivities. I can't wait! Do you think I can get some Belikin's shipped to CA for the fun?? I miss that cold drink!

#51929 - 05/01/02 10:05 AM Re: Trip Report - Part 2 (week of April 13th)  
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 266
Seaislegal Offline
Seaislegal  Offline
Our Buffett show will be at the end of June. SHould be a wild time!!

Looks like we have decided to head back to AC the week of May 3 next year. Prices drop at the end of April and it worked better date-wise for those in the group who have busy work time at fiscal year end so may not have been able to go in late April.

Hope you guys can come down again too!
Andrea in Atlanta

Andrea in Atlanta
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