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Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye

Posted By: mikell

Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 01:34 AM

It’s still very dark outside when we wake up at 5. I think we just want to get an extra hour out of our last half day here. We watch another lovely sunrise from the balcony with the last of our Belizean coffee…and I add the last shot of coconut rum from the small bottle I bought at the little store across the street. It’s a nice way to “kick-start” the day. I know it’s going to be a tough one.

[img]http://im1.shutterfly.com/procserv/47b4dd22b3127cceb9ee487658000000005610[/img]

Still, we are feeling pretty good and very glad we took a few extra days of vacation this year. A week was NOT enough last year. Ten days is a bare minimum. Most of the packing is done – just a few last minute things to throw in the bags after breakfast.

Banana Beach’s breakfast has been great all week. We’ve tried just about everything on their menu. Alan loves the banana pancakes the best. I decide to try eggs benedict today and they are wonderful. Out on the patio, we talk to a few people at nearby tables almost every day. Fellow vacationers are always eager to share information and tips about their travels – here and to other similar locations. We hear great things about Cozomel, Roatan, and other Caribbean islands. And everyone seems to agree that Ambergris Caye is among the best.

We take a few more pictures of the hotel. There are so many pretty locations around the property.

[img]http://im1.shutterfly.com/procserv/47b4dd22b3127cceb9ee3db399570000005610[/img]

[img]http://im1.shutterfly.com/procserv/47b4dd22b3127cceb9ee4ed6d9930000005610[/img]

After making arrangements to have a taxi pick us up for the ride to the airport at 10:30, we get our bags ready and check under the bed and behind the bathroom door one last time. There’s time to sit out in the sun for another hour and we are cherishing every minute of that. Our thoughts are inward as we soak it up and expand our memory cells to capacity. These sensations will be recalled later, and will hopefully help us face a few more weeks of winter once we get back home.

Soon, we can’t put off the inevitable any longer. We fetch our bags from the room and head down to the front desk to check out. The staff here has been so very good to us. We tell them this and thank them again for their wonderful hospitality.

I didn’t write anything else in my journal that day. It was all an anti-climax. Routine stuff like waiting for planes, buying rum, cigarettes and Marie Sharp preserves at the airport in Belize City, long silent flight home, arriving back late at night to another reality. You all know the drill.

It’s been two weeks since we got back. Writing this report has been like extending the vacation a little longer and it’s been fun and especially rewarding to read the comments from many of you. You are probably the only ones who would ever take the time to read all this. You all understand…or soon will…and can answer the question I began this report with…

Why Belize?

Check out our smiles on our last morning…

[img]http://im1.shutterfly.com/procserv/47b4dd22b3127cceb9ee4e8158f40000005610[/img]

The End
Posted By: BNBelizeSoon

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 01:46 AM

you choked me up with that one... I had been re-checking the board anxiously awaiting the end of your trip reports and I think I can speak for all on this board that you should go back and start this all over. I know it ended too soon for you but your trip ended too soon for me too. frown
Posted By: NYgal

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 02:09 AM

I have been awaiting the finale.
Thanks for all of the good reading.

It's a pleasure to see how one sees the island in comparison to some others.
But like you said, you spent time walking, riding and not spending all of the days in the spots that fog your memory, not that it isn't the way others should/shouldn't spend their time on vacations, it's their time to do as they wish.

Pics are great, bya the way laugh

It's been fun, keep your reminders of Ambergris Caye and Belize alive, we all do smile
Posted By: goody2shuz

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 02:21 AM

We can't wait to live out the experiences that you so wonderfully describe. As beautiful as you make it seem in your writing...I'm sure it only touches on the true beauty of this place that we will soon see. We will be starting to live the dream in only 22 more days!! laugh Thanks for the overture....
Posted By: Chloe

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 03:39 AM

Oh yeah, I understand.

Paradise.
Posted By: Barry

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 05:20 AM

Simply Fabulous! I read each report and share all the same feelings as so many on this board do! Thank You!
Posted By: dbdoberman

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 05:33 AM

The last day is so bittersweet, and you summed it up oh so well. It's been an enjoyable read. Thanks Mikell.
Posted By: seashell

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 10:05 AM

I can only remember one trip back that I didn't have tears in my eyes on the puddle jumper back to Belize City. That was my first trip. Despite the lack of tears, I've never been quite the same again. In fact, my life changed drastically, just so that I could go back and go back and go back and go back and go back and go back . . .

I've stayed longer every return trip than the trip before. (save one)

Thanks for your wonderful report and pictures.
Posted By: Now Danny

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 01:49 PM

Thank you so much for sharing your trip with us. You did a great , great job. A week from today I'll, we, will be there. BC's for the bbq, and I'll think of you. Danny
Posted By: JeanH

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 04:37 PM

Mikell, I'm sorry we missed seeing you in San Pedro, but I certainly have enjoyed reading your wonderful reports as well as looking at your great photographs.

Jean
Posted By: C from UK

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 04:54 PM

What are we going to do now without looking forward to your next report? - Keep writing on the board Mikell - you're an inspiration!
Posted By: Chloe

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 05:26 PM

Ok Mikell..........question time.

Where did you get those great braids/dreds?

Did you grow them or buy them?

Did you get them at home, or after you arrived in San Pedro?

Oh, what degree of difficulty to remove them?

BTW they look great on you. Wonder what the fish thought you were, with those long tendrils floating?
wink
Posted By: mikell

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 06:25 PM

the braids are all mine...no extensions. i've been getting my hair braided like this for about 25 years...every summer...and for vacations...been thru a few different braiders wherever i've lived...got it done again at home here before going to belize.

it's just a very "easy" way to wear long hair especially on vacations...don't want to spend any time fussing with hair when i can be out enjoying myself.

get asked these questions a lot...only takes a good braider about 2 1/2-3 hours to do the whole thing...i leave it braided for 6 to 8 weeks...sometimes longer. only need to shampoo every couple of weeks and it's actually good for your hair since it isn't exposed as much to the elements. taking it out yourself takes longer than putting it in...so i usually schedule about 5 or more hours...depending on how long i've left the braids in...the longer they're in...the more "fuzzy" and tangled the newly grown hair gets. i have naturally curly thick hair...would be different for someone with straight hair...and you can expect to brush out a lot of hair...since it's in braids, the hair we all lose every day doesn't have anywhere to go!

definitely recommend braids to anyone with long hair! smile
Posted By: Chloe

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 08:14 PM

Thanks Mikell, great plan to keep away the bad hair days. You have great hair, you lucky gal.

Question; Did you see Paisano in San Pedro?

Question; (I recall you asked alot of questions and did many searches on this board before your trip.) Did you find all your info. and answers to be true, honest, or almost like you found everything on Ambergris?

I feel safe in asking you questions, because you do pay close attention to details, and respond well.
Posted By: mikell

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 08:29 PM

Chloe...

i think we saw paisano...i remember many people mentioning his name before our trip...is he
the local character hanging around fido's most nights? an old guy who draws stares??? didn't get a chance to meet him in any case...so i'm not sure i have the right person in mind...

this board was/is great...i'm a big believer in research before vacations...how did we manage before the internet? joined up several months before our trip and learned all i could...you can almost feel like you're going to a familiar place and it greatly increases your pleasure...there's only so much time on vacations and you don't want to spend a lot of it trying to figure out where things are...especially the best places to eat or things to do/see.

we didn't get one "bum" steer from this board...lived up to all our expectations...but i also take everything i read with a "grain of salt"...figure out where the advice is coming from...and keep an open mind...knowing that we all have different tastes and desires for our own perfect vacation.

if you start with a great place like AC...do a little research...and can go with your own "flow" once you're there...there's no reason anyone should be disappointed or fail to have a great time!
Posted By: Chloe

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/14/04 10:21 PM

Mikell, I'd say you saw Paisano, the guy at Fido's. I only ask, to know if he is still out enjoying the good life.

Great to know, the board can make our trips more enjoyable, if that is possible in Belize.

Hey MARTY, chalk up a good one......lol.
Posted By: denverdan

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/15/04 01:39 AM

OOYYYY mikell...
ya made me "well up" girl!
Nice ending...why belize?
I miss it sooooo! frown
SIGH...
Posted By: Phoenix East

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/15/04 03:03 AM

Darn culture shock, does it everytime. Than ya gotta deal with re-entry shock. And then the addiction begins. wink
Posted By: Barbara K

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/15/04 03:59 AM

Definitely teary eye'd. Manana ---I'll be there....going "home"
Posted By: sean

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/15/04 05:04 PM

MIKELL, thanks for bringing back so many memories of san pedro and banana beach.those ocean front rooms are really a treat!just a tip to other BB future people.as good as the breakfast is at BB you can use the $10.00 blz allowance towards lunch too. that way you can hit ruby's or estell's on the ocean for breakfast too. they are very good places too as you take a nice walk walk on the beach!
Posted By: Jack and Rose

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/15/04 05:13 PM

Yes Paisano is the man walking around town & frequenting several places during the day & evenings. He is one of the local characters & has been to the top & down in San Pedro. The demon has him now.
Posted By: MN Jeff

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/15/04 05:49 PM

Hi Mikell-

Nice job on all the daily reports. Glad to hear you had such a good time and made it home safe and sound.

Take care-
Jeff
Posted By: scubalover

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/15/04 09:53 PM

Hey Mikell,
Thanks for the trip diary. You've given me some great ideas of things to do (like lunch at Caye Caulker) and we're looking forward to our trip. Your reports and pictures were great and I enoyed visiting vicariously through your words. Soon they will be my memories too. laugh
Posted By: zeecube

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/16/04 02:19 AM

Excellent trip report. You found a way to bottle Belize Time.
Posted By: Beachy

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/16/04 07:24 AM

Mikell,
Ah, amazing! I, for one, have to say that your reports have reminded me of some of the many reasons (I might have let slip) why I live here, and why I and so many of my friends do the work we do. Thanks for your fantastic prose and pictures, come back soon as you can!
Chris
Casa Picasso
Posted By: Janeto

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/16/04 09:00 PM

thank you so much for your reports. I can't wait to get there. did you get involved with any of the nightlife there? we have ten women going for 8 days, any do's and don'ts? I loved your wrap around in your photo. all the pictures you took were fantastic. thank you again.
Posted By: mimi

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/16/04 09:14 PM

what a fun trip! nice pictures.
there's not much better than your first cup of coffee in the morning looking out on that gorgeous caribbean with the tradewinds blowing and the sun in your face!
Posted By: mikell

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/17/04 12:42 AM

janeto...

sorry...can't help you out much with the nightlife scene...

we are more morning people...up before the sun every day and fairly active all day...by 9 or 10 at night, we're ready for bed! we did get to fido's a couple of nights...great atmosphere there...live music...good mix of people.

if you do a search of this site, you'll find lots of good info and advice about what's happening after dark...there seem to be quite a few places to hang out...and i can't imagine there are many "don'ts"....people are very friendly and it's a very safe place...

8 young women? now...that sounds like a blast! hope AC is ready for you!!! have fun!

regarding sarongs...you'll find them everywhere...that's just about all i wore the whole time...picked up a very beautiful one at heart & soul boutique...check it out.
Posted By: snoopycat

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/20/04 06:01 PM

Mikell,

For the past few weeks, I've been living vicariously through your reports. So sad to read the last day. But, in one month, I'll be living the dream and I'm sure all the information you provided will make my stay in AC even more enjoyable.

Thanks for all the words and pictures. You have described paradise!!

Susan
Posted By: mikell

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/21/04 01:26 AM

snoopycat...

to a great extent, the reason i wrote the report and posted pictures was because i learned so much from this message board and it really did pay off while we were there...wanted to pay back some of that by sharing with others about to make their first trip...like you!

all the tips, info & advice i received helped us get the most from our trip...we didn't waste a lot of time trying to figure out where to go or what to do...

you might benefit from downloading a couple of the maps available on this site which give you great detail in the location of various properties...from the south end...thru san pedro ...and on the north end. if you are a bit more familiar with the "lay of the land" before you go...it will be easier to settle in and a delight to spot "familiar" signs everywhere.

also...pick up a copy of the free GREEN GUIDE to Ambergris Caye...a small booklet with all kinds of useful info...available at coconet internet bar...or by mail ... [email protected]
Posted By: snoopycat

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/23/04 01:53 AM

Thanks again, Mikell. I feel like I'm going to a familiar place, what with all the information provided here.

I'm getting so excited about visiting AC. I don't think I've ever been on a message board that had so many good things to say about a vacation spot. Must be a special place.
Posted By: javaman

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/23/04 03:15 AM

Hi Mikell, thanks for all your help. Alot of your posts, and this board remind me of the one that i read on Tahiti/Moorea. It was sooo much help and you seem to find alot of friends on these things. I noticed that helping those who have'nt been yet seems to help hold that "3 mile stare" that you get after spending a couple of days bathed in sun and beer, not necessarily in that order. Hopefully it will take awhile before you start worrying about traffic and "city crap". Thanks again, take care
rc
Posted By: RMT

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/24/04 05:15 AM

Mikell,

That was wonderful! Thank you for the report. I left just after you came back and had been gone for 16 days. All of it spent on AC. I had to play catch up the last few days with the board. It was so nice to read your experiences there. I agree also about what you said about wanting more time! It's just so hard to leave.

I may be doing a trip report but after yours and a few of the others well....they will put mine to shame!

Thanks again.....Rhonda:)

Chloe....BTW....we saw Paisano quite often and he seems pretty much the same as our last trip. maybe a bit rougher around the edges? The last time I saw him he was hanging around at Canibals.
Posted By: mikell

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/24/04 06:03 AM

rhonda...

oh...lucky you...16 full days! i wonder if you got any of that windy weather...it seemed to be picking up when we left...we were there for the start of it...but it was still wonderful and warm!

glad you liked the trip report...if you managed to struggle thru finding all 15 parts...you must have post AC syndrome bad! i did post the whole thing at our personal website...a bit easier to read...but still several pages (and an annoying pop up with each page link due to using "free" web creation software)...if you ever want to show it to someone...follow the ambergris caye link from our home page...

http://home.rochester.rr.com/herrick1

and be sure to post your own report...i just love to read everyone's experiences...no matter how long or short...always sweet!! keeps the memories alive!
Posted By: RMT

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/24/04 06:11 AM

Mikell,

Thanks for your reply. I will take a look at your link for certain, thanks.

We arrived on Friday afternoon of the 5th. During the day it was not so bad but that evening..boy oh boy the winds were strong. That was pretty much the end of it though. Everyone told us how bad it had been for a few days. We really lucked out yet again weatherwise.

Ok, I need some sleep and have to drag myself away from this addictive board...now......Rhonda smile
Posted By: Chloe

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/24/04 06:14 AM

RMT thanks for the sighting of my Paisano.
Posted By: BNBelizeSoon

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/24/04 08:05 AM

mikell, we miss you and your reports...... i guess I'm going to have to start over soon, maybe just a few days before I leave to freshen up on ac. 17 days to go......
Posted By: Jack and Rose

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/24/04 04:10 PM

Hi Rhonda, 16 days!!!!! That must be so nice to have all that time to unwind and take your time exploring the island. I can attest to the wind!! We arrived Feb 28th and it was beautiful with only a nice tropical breeze. Sunday was also without any high winds. Come Monday, if you had a hat on you had better hold on to it or tie it to your head.The winds were at time gale force all the way to Friday. We never were able to go out on a snorkle trip or fishing. Some ventured out but they for the most part had a real rough go at it. Not my idea of fun. Saturday it let up enough that we were able to go to Caye Caulker,and it was well worth the trip over. Next trip I would like to maybe spend at least a night there.

Guess how the weather was on Sunday when we left? Of course, as calm as could be!! But despite the wind it was a wonderful time on AC,as long as you held on to the door to our balcony real tight to avoid having your arm severed!!

Mikell, you are right on advising people to pull up the local maps and click on all the places on them. They provide a wealth of info, and it was so suprising to how close places were to each other once you arrive.My wifes brother lives there and picked us up at the airport and as we were going Aqua Marina Suites, which is downtown, we went the entire length of Front Street.He couldn't believe how much I knew because I kept looking at places that I knew about because of the maps and of course this message board.I knew on that short trip down Front Street, that I had come to a plcae that I would find special.Our next trip south will be to Cozumel,which also holds a special place in our hearts.We have timeshare and will be going for X-mas this year.Our two sons will also bring the girlfriends!! I can highly suggest going to the Islands for X-mas, as they treat it the way it should be. None of the insanity we deal with in the States. We went in 2002,and Rose & I were floating in the warm,blue water X-mas eve and not even thinking about last minute trips to the mall for that gift you forgot. Try it some year,it's awesome. I,m rambling, Regards
Posted By: mikell

Re: Trip Report: Part Fifteen – Goodbye Ambergris Caye - 03/24/04 04:16 PM

xmas in the tropics anywhere sounds like a fabulous idea...we've thought of that too...would definitely love to spend the kind of holiday you describe!! would be great to have your family there with you.
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