I’m spending my second day on Caye Caulker in Belize. It’s a special
place to be right now, as it’s glory days draw to an end and the
speculators, locals and facilitators start to turn heavy money quickly
trading on the beauty. There are teenagers and tourist’s with
children here now, US$7 burgers, and all inclusive resorts. Most of
the places that I remember and loved are still here, but they all have
prominent signs alerting potential investors to their availability.
There’s an odd disparity between what people are willing to invest and
what locals think they might score and there’s a brisk trade in
bridging the gap. You can watch the stuff of Hemingway and Capt Tony slipping away, relocating ex-locals smuggling a piece on each ferry ride as they cash out on their 30-year homesteads to troll other coutries for the next Key West of the 70s.

After 5 days with vacationing Belizeans, I’m glad to be amongst the
filthy backpackers once again. The Belizeans were great fun and did
wonders for my Spanish (if not my lingual self-esteem), but the
difference between backpacking and vacationing can be clearly
demonstrated on a balance sheet and I was starting to worry that I was sacrificing later adventure. That’s ridiculous, of course, because
the first few days room and board were fully provided, as was more,
but it’s hard to remember that when you’re eating meals at Chicago
prices in Chetumal Mexico dreaming of 3 beers for a dollar in Panama.

Now I’m amongst the familiar crowd of aussies, kiwis, grifting locals,
semi-permanent transplants, canucks (lots of them), and, of course,
real estate strategists. I was talking to a guy who apparently does
intel for insurance firms predicting long term weather patterns and
he’s convinced that Belize will be one of the few english speaking
places that don’t get royally screwed over by our newly-UN-approved
global climate change. Today they’re buying 30 acres in San Agnacio.

>From here it’s hard to imagine going inland. The Carribean has a
tight grip and people that have left since I’ve arrived (yesterday)
are already talking about a lengthy meet-up in the bay islands of
Honduras. If I move along quickly I’ll save money and position myself
well for those of you who are considering flying into Costa Rica in
March. I intended to visit San Agnacio, where my friends are, but
after their vacation in Chetumal I think they may be way too busy and
I’d only be a burden.

Big ups to CVS brand SPF 30 aerosol sunscreen. Though I’m as pale as possible and spending numerous hours in the tropical sun while taking doxycycline (sp?), I have yet to burn even slightly. Thanks [redacted] for being patient with me as a poured over the ounces and active-ingredient-percentages of the available sunscreens.

I’ll upload some pictures the next time I’m uploading my thoughts. I
took serveral today while hiking the island and hopefully some of them will illustrate what caye caulker is right now and will only be for
the next 18 months or so.

Take care folks.