Saturday, August 15, 2009

Welcome to Belize City!

This is the Police Check Point as you enter Belize City. Sometimes they are standing there checking your insurance and registration that is adhered to the passenger side windshield. Sometimes they look at your license. Sometime they are watching for "bad guys" as there is only one road going in to Belize City from the south (or going out south). No one there when we passed

The first round-about. They have many in Belize... they work very well. I know it confuse the heck out of people it they put one in Forest Lake like they were talking a few years ago, but traffic would be better... I love this sculpture.

Another roundabout...

This is the light house that is also on the Light House Beer... (Belikin Lite)

Our favorite place for lunch in BC is Old Belize

No, no thank you....

Its a nice view form the tables where you eat

Beautiful place, well done decor

Hi Phil!
In the heart of Belize City... Ace Hardware. Its Huge inside as it wonders through 3 buildings. It has a little of everything.

The Coke distributor in Belize. Coke products, Beer and water.

My FAVORITE... Stationary house. They have everything that office max has as far as supplies. This is what the store fronts look like through much of Belize City. LOTS of nice shoe shopping!The heart of down town...Belize Bank of BCSee the cruse ship Monday and Tuesday are cruse ship day in Belize. The boats park out there and they send passenger boats out to pick up people and send them on their land adventures trough the area. The Radisson Fort George, very nice!View form our last room at the Radisson They have 2 buildings... this is the cross walk.

Benny's Hard Ware. The only place in BZ that has a pain matching machine. But in was broken the past few months. In the US you would have part and repairs in a day... here it has to be imported form the US, duties paid and can take a few months. Nothing is "easy" here...Its all about patience. A full new level of patience sometimes! ;-)So, Can they do that? Ben the Builder?? I remember how much my nephew Ben LOVED Bob the builder! This is Belize medical Associates. This is where Phil was taken care of last year with his heart issues. This is Dr Gough, Cardiologist. He has been great! Phil had a stress test a few weeks ago just as a follow up being we can afford it here. ($150US) and Phil did GREAT! This is the office of Dr Cuellar. (He is our Nurse Judy's brother!) In his office is his desk area in the front then a half wall where his exam table is. Here you can stop in in the morning and ask to have blood drawn for various test. You meet with him later in the day to go over the results. His fee... $25US. And if he needs you to come back later in the day- there is no additional charge for it. Lab fees are so affordable too...compared to the US. For people in the country who make $35BZ ($17.5oUS) a day its still very expensive!

Dr Cuellar is a funny and kind guy!

This man is selling Craboo.

This is Beauty Plus. It is one of the main stores I purchase supplies for the spa. Has all kinds of shampoos and toiletries and beauty supplies. All products you see at Walmart. Avon is on the shelves here. No "high end" products.

Belize Bank in BC

One day I was walking down the street and I heard a dog barking and knew it was a chihuahua. So, now every time I am in this area of town I stop to see my little friend.

I can't remember his name... He is a sassy little guy who bites but loves to be talked to. He has this little bed on the shelving and keeps an eye on the place.

this is Food and Beverage. It is like a mini Sam's Club. It has a small shopping area, and I believe the rest is a ware house. There are a lot of Chinese people and restaurants in the country so we were able to find many sauces, spices and other fun things here for cooking. This is BTB office. I have not been there but its a good thing to know that the BTB is a branch of the government here. They help protect and promote the tourism industry here in the country. If you would like info about the country see their web page. If you ever have a bad experience in Belize, this is who you would report concerns to.
Donut Shop. The owner said she was from Florida and in this place since the I think (as i try to remember what she told me a year ago) since the mid 70's.

WE stopped here once, but we see her donuts for sale in the big grocery stores. I am not a raised donut persons, I still love my Cinnamon-Sugar old fashion from the Swedish Bakery 3 doors down from my old office on main street in Lindstrom.

OK... this is the subway that closed I think around Christmas this past year. I am SO glad it did. I was told that this was the only place in Belize that was aloud to import all the meats, breads and etc as it is a franchise. Well, we had eaten there about 4 times in total... the first time was great... Ah, Subway like home. Then every time after that they would be out of stuff... and the meats just didn't taste "right" so we stopped going. Then all of a sudden it was closed. In the US we eat a lot of sandwiches... that is not case here. Lunches here are "chicken, rice and beans". We often find that sandwiches are just bread with one little slice of meat and a piece of cheese. Nothing fancy.
This is Chef Meats. VERY good beef (sometimes hard to find here)! And prime cuts of beef are about $2US a pound.

Peppers Pizza. A lot like Dominos.

Did you know that Marion Jones mother is form Belize? When she was in the Olympics and won medals this place was created and named for her in her honor. People we so proud to have a Belizean-American do so well.

But it was in her second Olympic that the drug/steriroid scandel happened and people her were so deeply hurt and sadend. There is talks of this place and other sports facilities and parks getting a major repair in the next year or so. You will see many people after work out walking the track here so it is still in use.
Now keep in mind, ther are often grants given by organizations and other countries to have things built... but that doesn't mean that there is going to be funding by the country who receives it to have the upkeep. So, its easy to look at a place and think "why did they let it fall apart" but the truth is there is no money to up keep it... Another example is when someone donated lights for a basketball court in a village. Wonderful thought and gift! People can play basketball at night! BUT who pays for the electricity? So the lights are not on. You want to send books or school supplies to a school for a doantion... but who pays the duties when they arrive? Everything takes planning. So, when you see something when you travel in a 3rd world or developing country that doesn't seem "right" in our North American eyes, you have to look through their eyes and understan their culture to see how beautiful it truly is.

This place was my "saving grace". Its like a mini Target. And in fact my bath towels are Target brand. They have a wonderful kitchen section, housewares, bedding, curtains, toys, electronics... everything! We have learned to live with far less shopping... but its still nice to just go and look ... men don't always understand that, but you ladies know what I am talking about.

So that is our view and favorite places of Belize City.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Belmopan... a few of our favorite things...

This is Builders Hardware... They have Dutch Boy paint! And its big... not like Menard's, but bigger than a local Ace hardware.
Dainty Bakery! Great fresh breads! We don't eat bread every day so we like to have the nice whole wheat french bread with a nice meal.

Its in this little strip mall that also has a good coffee shop. The strip mall faces Brodie's picture below and between is a nice little park. Belmopan is the Capital of Belize. It has more housing communities that resemble that which you see in the states.

Brodie's! They have good groceries selection... much more variety than in Dangriga. They also have nice household things like bedding, dishes and decor.

This is the Art Box. It is as you leave Belmopan on the way to Belize City. It one stop souvenir shopping... but the building inside is so uniquely done its worth the stop.

Cool floors!

This is the hadn sink outside the bathroom!


Hummingbird Highway before Belmopan....

We see a lot of orange farms along the way to Belize City. I just love how these things grow on the trees. I remember having a tiny little plant thing like this that grew on a magnet... who didn't have one of those?

When Phil and I first arrived n Belize in Oct 2007 Charlie and Pat picked us up at the International Airport. WE drove the Hummingbird Highway for the first time. It is SO beautiful!! and above is a photos of "Suicide Tree" as Pat and Charlie call it. If you miss the curve coming either direction.... oopsand this Desiree told me she calls Suicide Hill. (not knowing about suicide tree). Semi trucks come down and take the center to cut out the curve ... makes me nervous... this view is "going home" from Belize City... And this is the Sleeping Giant. You only notice him form the "coming home" view. Very cool. I am sure the Mayan 's worshiped and feared him.