Yesterday I woke up in Belize, took a boat to Guatemala and went to bed in Honduras! The past few days have been a whirlwind of travel. Francesco and I left Cancun on Tuesday after giving up on seeing my luggage any time in the near future. We’ve been taking public collectivo buses everywhere to save money. They are usually around 1/10th of the price (or less!) than a tourist bus. All of the buses are brightly painted, recycled old North American school buses. Each one is unique – and crowded!
We arrived in Dangriga, Belize in the afternoon and decided to spend Christmas Eve in this chill little town. Most people who live here are Garinagu (Garifuna), a mixture of Carib and West African decent. I didn’t realize that Belize is so sparsely populated – there are only about 300,000 inhabitants in the entire country, less twice the amount in Madison!
I was able to get a 6 mile run in along the ocean in Dangriga and it felt glorious to finally be able to stretch my legs out. Francesco also came out with me for the first bit; it was nice to have the company!
Christmas day we arrived via bus in Punta Gorda, Belize and found out due to Christmas, the boat to Guatemala wouldn’t be running that day. We checked in to Nature’s Reserve hostel for the night. While it had a great location on the waterfront and was surrounded by beautiful foliage, it definitely wasn’t as nice as the Rough Guide made it sound. The staff was unfriendly, rooms were sparse and showers were ice cold.
Exploring Punta Gorda was a lot of fun, even though it was deserted for the holiday. We walked around quite a bit and spent some time taking photos.
I even found Santa Clause!
I also got in another beautiful run along the ocean, 8 miles this time. The next morning an American at the hostel told me that he used to coach track and field and that he had seen me running. In his words, my stride was ¨smooth and relaxed¨ and he asked if I ran marathons. It’s nice to hear that my work on running form seems to be paying off.