Food is something that brings the world together. Each culture has its own traditions and favorite foods. As a self proclaimed foodie, I was so excited to try cuisines in the countries they originated in. During my travels, I have discovered and will undoubtedly continue to discover culinary treasures around the globe. I am honored to share with you, My Elephant Tribe, the amazing meals I have enjoyed throughout the world.
Day 4: Belize
Today we had another early wake up call. We woke up at 4am for a day we will probably never forget. We went snorkeling for the very first time. Edmond set us up with a tour through Amigos del Mar that went to The Blue Hole, Half Moon Bay and the Aquarium. Swimming in the middle of the ocean was absolutely amazing. I feel at home in the water. Having been a swimmer most of my life, I feel most comfortable in the water. I had a moment of slight irritation before getting off the boat at our first snorkel location. The guide offered us a floatation vest to wear during the dive which I politely declined. An older lady in our group went to the guide to tell him that I absolutely needed a floaty because this was my first snorkel. Again, I declined, this time with a slight edge to my voice. Suppressing my irritation I jumped into The Blue Hole sans floatation device. It was breathtaking. I think in a past life I was a fish or a dolphin or some other form of marine life. The water is where I feel most free. I can do anything when I’m in the water. It is my happy place, where I feel most centered.
The 30 minute snorkel seemed like five. I wanted to stay in the water and couldn't wait to get to the next site. On our way to our next location I told Brian about what the lady had done and how it made me feel. He explained that the woman didn't know, how was she supposed to know I was a really good swimmer. She had never met me before. So when we got off the boat at the 2nd location, I was asked again if wanted a life jacket. Again my response was no thank you, but this time I explained that I spent most of my life as a competitive swimmer and that the water was home. After that it became a non-issue and the focus became the snorkeling.
The second snorkel at Half Moon Bay was not my favorite. The water was shallow and there were less fish. The octopi (yes, that is the plural form of octopus) were hiding and the lobster were few and far between. Don’t get me wrong, it was beautiful. However, I prefer the snorkel at The Blue Hole better than Half Moon Bay.
After our snorkel we had lunch and had some time to explore the island. The island is known for Red Footed Booby birds. They have an observation deck that literally puts you up in the trees with the birds. I had a moment of panic. I was not a bird in a past life. My one true fear is birds. They are unpredictable and mean. They freak me out. At first Brian went up to the observation deck to take pictures and I stood by the stairs for a good 10 minutes and decided what better place than Belize to overcome my fear of birds. I hesitantly climbed up the stairs and stood up there with the birds for a about 2 minutes and then decided I had had enough. I still don't like birds, but I am a little less terrified.
After challenging my fears we moved on to our final snorkel location, The Aquarium. This was my favorite location. I literally got to swim with schools of fish. I got to touch and swim side by side with them. It was one of the coolest things I have ever done in my life. Word of advice, don't forget your SPF 100 sunscreen. We kept reapplying, but ended up redder than the lobsters we saw at Half Moon Bay.
On our way back, I meditated. Taking in the warm ocean breeze and the salty air, I reflected on how blessed I am to be on this journey. It is important to reflect and be grateful for the amazing things in our life. I do this through meditation and a gratitude journal. I recommend you find something that works for you. If you don't know, start with a gratitude journal, take 5 minutes in the morning and in the evening to write down the things in your life you are grateful for.
Once the boat docked we decided to head back to the Palapa Bar & Grill again for dinner. We were exhausted so we decided on an early dinner and then heading back to our room. We shared the sausage dip which was delicious. Brian had the wings ($1 Belize with 3 different sauces) and I had the chicken quesadilla. It was so yummy! It was cheesy and had a smoky flavor, different but really good. We sat at the same table and decided to remedy the whole Packers situation. We crossed out Packers and wrote Bears. I’m positive that the original tagger meant to write Bears. They must of had a momentary lapse in judgement. I also tagged to table with my website www.thejourneywithin.com in hopes that it will inspire other travelers to take on their own life and live their vision.