Well what a travel day! It was supposed to be simple, 6:30 pickup at Tikal, dropped off at the intersection to Belize to be picked up by my next transfer.
Problem #1 – driver forgot to drop me off, wild u-turn ensues but the result is I am 20 min. late for connection.
Conundrum #1 – do I wait and hope they are late too or do I take the mini-chicken bus beckoning me? I take the chicken bus. So much for sleeping all the way to Belize.
So he gets me almost to the border.
Problem #2 – When I get out I am pounced on by a money changer – Ok then, I was wondering how I was going to get rid of my Q’s. I am learning that there are no problems that travellers encounter that an enterprising person hasn’t already created a solution for.
Problem #3 – I am also flanked by the #1 problem solver of all travellers – the taxi driver. Money changed after I deduct the cab driver’s fare and in I hop. (I want you, for a moment to imagine Guatemala is sprinkled with men who have been l laid low by my deadly duffel.)
The taxi driver stops so I can hop out to say good-bye the Guatemala gov’t and continues along to say hello to the Belize gov’t. All I can say is I hope that all my border crossings go so well!
Problem #4 – Getting to the bus stop in Benque… yup there’s a taxi driver for that! On the way the cheeky bugger tries to talk me into hiring him all the way to Belize City. $200 us. hahahahaha But since we just missed a bus to BC I agree to pay him to beat it to San Ignacio, stopping at the bank machine so I won’t have to hitchhike. Perfect timing! Of course I have only had ½ cup of coffee and no breakfast but I am reluctant to wait for the next bus so I hop on and the deadly duffel wounds yet another man who is too macho to use the freaking wheels.
Problem #5 – I’m sitting on the bus waiting for it to leave and I go for my wallet to pull out the fare…. except WHERE IS MY WALLET?! I CAN’T FIND IT! My heart is thundering in my chest as I bundle everything up and jump off the bus, telling the co-pilot to pull the deadly duffel cause I DON’T HAVE MY WALLET! Poor lad, just what he wanted to do. As I dump everything out on the sidewalk to look again, someone from inside the bus hands him MY WALLET!!!!!! I almost cried, seriously, cried. And almost went into a hugging fit which I resisted to everyone’s relief. I made the woman take some money and sat and grinned like an idiot for like 30 minutes.
So there I was rumbling along the Belize highway in a chicken bus, finally. Reggae, hip-hop and salsa blared on the speaker and I was so happy not it wasn’t that horrible Guatemalan music. I love being back in Belize!
As we drove along the Belmopan highway I could see Kerry and I years ago dragging our suitcases along the side of the road because the bus we were on didn’t go into Belmopan. And how this woman stopped and picked us up and… well that’s another story. I had to smile thinking of that great trip and those intrepid women who were so eager for adventure.
When I got back on after the break in Belmopan I sat in front of a 2nd grade teacher and her son and across from a young couple from Nelson, BC and we had such fun chatting and laughing. The time flew by!
Landed in Belize City actually earlier than I expected and just stood on the sidewalk blissfully without a plan or really a problem and of course a taxi driver swept me up to solve the problem before it became one and took me to my hotel. We even got to talk politics since today is election day in Belize so it just seemed right.
Now if some one could solve the problem of all the mosquito bites on my legs from being in Tikal after dark life would really be problem free.