Thursday, March 7, 2013

News From the South: Mexican Mission Madness With a Side of Belize

Sunrise, Belize City Municipal Airport. Take that, Pearson!
Iskia. At least she didn't try to kill me.
Greeting from beautiful Belize! I know it has been awhile, so without further adieu:

Where my left kidney would try to exit via my navel.
1. Things that Go Bump 1: Me. During my week in Merida, I joined my friend Dianne, her esposo El Perfecto, and a few of their friends on a jaunt to Celestun, to see the 40,000 odd flamingos that reside there in all of their glory. And how splendid they were. What wasn't so splendid was me slipping on the back of the boat while getting in, thus sitting down in the bottom of the boat really, really hard while basically pushing a kidney through my abdomen. Why the f-sharps never flowed, I don't know.

2. Bend It Like Beckam: Me. While attending to, shall we say, personal issues after injuring my ego and my hip/kidney/spleen/any other organ on my left side, I found I had to have the dexterity of an unbaked pretzel to complete the job without causing me excruciating pain. And with my bathroom window right by the kitchen at the B and B, I am sure they were wondering about the screaming.

3. Things That Go Bump 2: Me. Whilst tooling around town with Arturo the medical student, he forgot to slow down for one of the 1 billion speed bumps in Merida. I was airborne. At least until I hit the roof of the car.

Arturo. Don't let his smile fool you. He tried to kill me.
4. It's All In The Pronunciation: I had bought Tramadol over the counter in Merida for the problems stemming from number 1, as well as a bunch of other co-dependent meds. No problem in Merida. Needed more while in Vallodolid on the mission. No matter how I asked, she didn't have it. Then I wrote it down. Silly me, I had been putting the emphasis on the "Tra" and pronouncing the "ol" with a short "o". It should be a  long "o" with the emphasis on the last syllable. My pronunciation was in a completely weird language, I guess. Maybe even English.

5. All Things happen In Threes: So for the mission, I had two other room mates. It was wonderful. Two of us yelling across the third roomie because we couldn't hear well. The third roomie had the blankies drawn up over her head. We could hear some muttering for about a half hour from beneath the blankets, but were suprised by a jack-in-the-box appearance and an appeal to be quiet. WHAT?????

6. Modesty: Some folks have no sense 'cause their mamas never learned them. I have visuals engraved forever on the billboard of my brain. And it ain't pretty.

7. Itching For A Scratch: Doesn't matter what country you are in, just the very mention of scabies sends me into an itching frenzy. If I see a patient with it? Let's just say I'd be your scratch person if you buy scratch and wins in bulk. I'd want half the take, please, for putting up with the dead skin silver crud underneath my nails.

8.She's So Cold: Me. Hard as it is to believe. I had read about the ice box ADO buses from Mexico to Belize City. So I totally prepared. I wore my capris and my handy dandy Tilley Shirt. Kept a t-shirt out as well as a pair of socks to wear with the croc flops in the back pack. Because, you know, I am never cold. Something just to take the edge off.

And there I was on that big honking luxury bus, the ONLY passenger. Period. With two drivers. Something about being in a herd that creates heat. My herd of three created diddly squat, especially when the second driver disappeared out of the bus once we were outside of Merida. The driver, Jose, had no control over the air con, I guess to keep the head sheep awake during the trip.

I put on the tshirt, then the socks, then tried to snuggle in the seats and into the curtains, to no avail. I think the vents were everywhere. Even in the seat cushions.

I was looking forward to the heat of the outside air when I arrived at the Mexican border at 2 AM. Ha! I laughed at the face of adversity, as I laughed at the outdoor temps that were colder than that wheeled meat locker.

Belize Municipal Airport Sunrise. Take that, Miami!
 Finally, at the Belize border, where I had to take out my suitcase for inspection, I donned my jeans and my runners. Still frozen. Then I looked at the driver. It wasn't Jose anymore. He looked like the other guy who had disappeared earlier. Shook my ice cube addled brain. Maybe this was some new guy they picked up at the border. But then, where was Jose? Strange things happen on the night bus.

Until we were a few minutes away from the bus terminal in Belize City. We pulled off to the side, I heard the luggage hold open, and lo and behold, out popped Jose. He had a blanket, something else the bus lacked besides heat. The only thing I could think of was that he was on a tray much like you find in a morgue. Hell, he was even covered up, like we cover up bodies, well, not with the heavy duty plastic wrap they put them in. And my two drivers, my Really Big Bus, and I, arrived at the Belize City bus station. In the cold. At about 5 AM.

Take that, Betty Grable!
9. Stupid Is As Stupid Does: Who on earth would go to the jungle in capris without bug spray, only to be bitten by a trillion no see ums that have no trouble seeing this um, sucking about 2 litres of blood out and making both legs look like the Guinness Book of Record's largest connect the dot project ever, and causing same person to apply lime juice thus smelling like a giant mojito in the middle of the night because the legs. Don't. Stop. Itching.?
Give up?

Why I do what I do.


  1. If I didn't know better...I'd say the trip was a mess....but, you "cowboyed up" and had fun....Right?? Enjoy the rest of your trip!!!


  2. the trip was better than described, just trying to get the antics out :) And of course, the people i met along the way made it!!