January 23, 2012
This morning we woke up early and quickly got ready to leave. We drove through Belize City and arrived at the ferry. We scrambled onto the boat and started off on our 1 hour ride to Caye Caulker. I felt a little motion sickness a few times as the boat rocked side to side, but luckily I was fine the whole boat ride. The ocean is so blue! The farther out away from mainland that we got, the more turquoise the water became. We passed many islands covered in jungle as we came closer to the island that we would be staying at until Thursday. As we got closer to Caye Caulker, the water became so clear that we could see straight to the bottom. We saw beautiful docks, some with tiki huts that stretched over the clear waters. There are beautiful, super colorful houses all along the shoreline. Palms cover the island and there is soft, white sand. I was surprised at the amount of seaweed that accumlates on the beaches. However, there really aren't any beaches. There are tons of boat docks, but there is only one public place that people can go swimming which is at the Splits. Finally, we arrived to our dock and we jumped off of the boat. The piers are so beautiful and there are so many things to take in; it's like we stepped into a postcard. We grabbed our luggage and walked down the long pier and through the town until we arrived at the china town hotel. Cody and I are staying on the third floor, away from everyone else who are spread out in different rooms across the property. I love our room, there is not anything special or beautiful about it. There is just... air conditioning and hot water! It's small with a bed, a nightstand, a tv, a fridge, a chair, a closet, and a small bathroom. I thought it was funny that the doorknob hanger that says do not disturb or needs cleaning actually says, “Do not dosturb and Please cleaning.” I think the English could have been translated a little better :)
We went out to eat at The Sandbox which is close to the ocean front. The food was really good, but it seemed like we waited forever for our food to come-probably because we were starving. I learned that I love Pina Coladas (virgin, of course) and that you can each conch (which is like lobster meat that comes out of the conch shell). I will be getting both of those tonight, I think :) Then, we walked around looking for a place to go swimming. We made a huge loop around the east side of the island and finally found the Splits with some directions. There is an old concrete pier that is broken in several places, but it serves as a place to sit since there is no beach to sit on. I threw my stuff down and jumped in the beautiful big blue wet thing. The water was the perfect temperature and we found that the ocean is really shallow near the shore. We were able to stand up easily at 100 ft out. Sarah found a starfish, so Cody picked it up and we all took pictures with it. We found an even bigger starfish farther out, which was pretty cool because it's not everyday that you find live starfish out in the ocean. We swam for a while and played chicken once. We avoided the seaweed as it was scary to get your feet in it. Apparently, Brighton cut his toe open on the broken concrete slabs and so there was a nice blood trail from the dock to the sand. Everybody warned us to not go near the concrete and to climb up around the other side, but of course, Cody had to climb up the concrete slab and cut his toe open, too. It was a lot of fun being in the ocean. It's so different from the beaches that I've went to in the U.S. You can see the bottom perfectly and there aren't any waves because the coral reef breaks all of the waves further out in the ocean. We walked back to the hotel past all of the street vendors and restaurants. We cooled off in the small swimming pool and then I went back to our room to shower. I did get a little sunburned on my face and chest, even though I put plenty of sun-lotion on. In a little bit, we are going to go to supper and then have class this evening.