We’re leaving Belize. We’d like to stay a little longer, but the timing is working out this way. As much as I’ve given San Pedro a hard time, we’ve enjoyed it a thousand fold times more. We love it here and knowing that we will be leaving in one, short little week we’re feeling a self-imposed sadness and a relished enjoyment during the last few weeks here.
One week left. What?
We have met so many people that come back to Ambergris Caye every year, some have been coming for more than 25 years. At first I thought “How strange – wouldn’t you want to go see other places?”
But, now I get it, whatever it is. The island starts to call you – the sunshine, water, sand or general vibe. It’s relaxing and addicting. Ambergris Caye is a Paradise. It is comfortable and just the right size. It is inexpensive – Ambergris Caye is the third least expensive island in the Caribbean. It is undoubtedly beautiful with great water activities. It is cultural – Guatemalan sellers, Mexican, Mayan, Creole, Rasta and North Americans all share this island. The island is relaxed – there is no dress code here, you don’t have to wear shoes and whatever you are wearing is fine – no one cares much. And the weather is just about perfect with awesome sunshine and welcome breezes.
We are counting down our days, embracing the gem that is Ambergris Caye and missing it already – even though we haven’t left yet.
The white sands, blue waters and green palms of Ambergris Caye make for a flawless kaleidoscope that the eyes just want to rest on forever.
The diversity that is Belize
It’s not just this island. We’ve traveled throughout Belize and have savored the unique and vastly opposite cultural mix that this tiny country of 300,000 people has. We have devoured Garifuna hudut, lived in a Mayan village for 4 days, learned a few Kriol words, met lots of Canadians, and backpacked with people from all over Europe. Belize is a tiny country, but it’s BIG on variety of culture.
We’ve had a ton of adventures: made corn tortillas, explored sacrificial caves, kayaked to the second largest barrier reef, learned to scuba dive in one of the premier locations in the world, explored ancient Mayan ruins, hiked in the jungle, ate jungle plants, went deep sea fishing and ate the best, fresh fish we could.
And there is so much that we didn’t get to do, but we can’t do it all. Our intention is not to check-mark off every site, but to create a balance in traveling and living in different places.
Six months of growing
We’ve watched our two children grow up in the six months we’ve been here.
We’ve lived on the beach, next to the Caribbean ocean and have been outside for a majority of the day, playing in the sand and spending at least 3 hours in the pool everyday. My children have transformed into fish.
G, our calculated risk taker, now jumps into the water from the side of the pool, swims underwater and makes up all sort of new things to do underwater. I love going under with him with goggles on. He looks like he’s in a perfect Zen mode.
Miss I is not yet 2 years old and swims circles around us in her water wings. She goes underwater, lets Daddy-o throw her into the air and comes up from the water with wide eyes and a large smile. During our time in Belize, Miss I has learned how to speak in 3-4 word sentences, says her ABCs, sings Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star and has developed her beautiful ray of light that shines from within to be an obvious, radiating luminescence.
I can tell both of my children are proud of their abilities and I am relishing in their pleasure. They are awesome, easy going kids that remember their friends fondly, even those they only spent a week with.
And Mr. King and I have learned how to ultimately relax. So much so, that we’ve barely worked on our business. We need to get away from this island to get some work done…we’ve been way too social and way too relaxed…and we’ve loved every minute. It makes it hard to leave. We are extremely torn about leaving, but it’s time to get uncomfortable again.
So…where are we going next?
What a decision we had to make! When most of the world is available to you, the choices are vast. The idea of staying within Latin America to further solidify our Spanish and enjoy the Latin culture is appealing. We looked at Antigua, Guatemala and there are a lot of reasons to move to Antigua. It is a beautiful city with so much culture and history. I was sitting in the McDonald’s in Antigua, one of the most elegant McDonald’s in the world (I’m not kidding). It had a beautiful courtyard with a water fountain in the middle and felt like a European cafe. I was pondering moving here and it had quite an appeal. Guatemala is beautiful with volcanoes and a colorful culture. We imagined eating at the delicious restaurants, strolling among the interior gardens and being very happy here. We’ve lived in Latin America for the past 2 years. We’re pretty comfortable here. We speak the language, expect its inefficiencies and are familiar with the food. Moving here would be easy.
But, that is also the reason that we are not going to move to Antigua or stay in Central America. It’s comfortable for us. We’re ready for a change, a different experience, a new panorama and new growth.
Getting uncomfortable, again.
We don’t grow when we are comfortable and complacent. To grow we need to challenge ourselves. There is a small sense of security in comfort, but that security can also turn into fear of the unknown and encompass you in a bubble – which, as you may guess – is not my style.
I love the experience of a new experience.
– S King
Getting uncomfortable and reaching for new, interesting experiences creates a completely different mindset, one in which we’re eager to move in, create from and grow with. Many of us are so comfortable in our lives, we’ve forgotten the joy of transcending an uncomfortable experience. Comfortable experiences don’t inspire growth, they encourage complacency and stagnation.
So, we thought about a place that is totally unfamiliar to us: Asia. Wow – that would be quite a move! Asia appeals to us because it is SO different than what we are used to. We love Asian flavored food, but that’s about all we know. It is completely foreign to us.
And that is why we are going there. We plan on spending a few years traveling throughout, but our love of island living is strong and we’ll start our journey with at least six months in….(don’t hate us because we’re going and you’re not, because you can always come and visit)….Bali.