Paget’s Belize Journal #3

Wednesday, June 16: A tourist trip

Yesterday I had my tourist day. Went by van up from the coast
on various “highways” and back roads through the citrus
fields to the Belize zoo which is a natural habitat approach
for native Belizean animals and birds.
The iguanas, of course, stay in whichever compound appeals to
them at that moment, but large cats and wart-hog thingies (whatever)
are safely confined. It was a grand morning. Never did get to
see a tapir, but other than that a nearly perfect zoo experience.
The zoo is dedicated to Gerald Durrell, one of my favorite authors,
and has major support from Harrison Ford. By the looks of things,
if you hang out for a while Harry will drop by. Gerald, unfortunately,
has passed on.

Lunch at a restaurant with picnic tables beside the river
(Belize River I think, but its name changes depending on where
you are) entertained by the resident toucan, Juliette. Romeo
flew away last season, but Juliette likes to know where her next
banana is coming from. This charming little place is called Clarissa
Falls and is built on a Mayan temple mound so the story goes.
Learn a little and see a picture of our hostess, Cena, (pronounced
Chaina) at

Then on to Xunantunich, a late Mayan ruin, still occupied
about 1000 AD. An overwhelming experience for me for some reason.
This ruin is not very popular, so it was quiet and I was free
to wander and soak up the feel of the place. And there were handy
young Mayan men to answer questions and point out more iguanas
and so forth. It’s within a few miles of the Guatamalan border
but since I didn’t climb the 13 stories to the top of the monument,
so I didn’t get to even look at it. I took some nice pictures
of butterflies instead and gazed with shock on an okra tree.
These things are weird, with the okra pods growing straight out
from the trunk instead of dangling gracefully from a branch.
I’m sure that’s not how we grow okra.

Today I’m off to San Pedro to attend a big meeting of the
tourist board with Therese and Tony.

For the ladies, all my noodling about clothes has paid off.
I have an almost perfect assortment. But I wish I had brought
some baking soda body powder.