It’s not yet Easter but I had a pretty good Friday and also had Monday off, so there were a couple of similarities. As much as I am enjoying my volunteering in Belize, Friday was good due to having the day off. I would be working on Saturday and so my manager let me swap days off.
During my time at VICE magazine in Prague, I was lucky enough to witness a couple of national holidays and my timing has been good again. Monday is a national holiday in Belize and so we didn’t have to work that day either. Yeeee ha!
I spent my time on Friday baking bread, heating up lunch for me and Dom (who was working), speaking to my old man and one of my sisters and brother in law back home, and starting an application for an internship with Greenpeace. Keep your fingers and toes crossed for me everyone. It would be a dream job for me. My day off doesn’t sound that exciting on paper but I think I liked it so much because I was listening to a few albums that I haven’t heard in ages, and the fact that I was able to walk around in just shorts and flip flops. Something which I never really do at home. The evening could have been better. We could’ve had a few beers but by the time we had eaten it was getting late and I didn’t fancy missing my 6 am bus in the morning.
I didn’t miss my bus. I stupidly made it with about quarter of an hour to spare. The early bird gets the worm but misses out on Cornflakes for being over cautious. My bus trip took me twenty minutes outside of Punta Gorda where I hooked up with a dude who is now my good buddy. From there we drove to the hospital where we picked up the ‘money man’ and the ‘muscle’. Today we were buying cacao from the local farmers spread out across the Toledo district. We would stop at each farm, weigh the cacao, pay the farmer or his wife, and repeat until all the farms were done. It took about six hours in total.
Once all of the cacao was bought and bagged, we needed to take it to the drying house to begin the fermentation process. We dropped off the cashier and the lad who did most of the carrying, and hit the road. Not long after hitting the road, we hit a cement mixer which was being towed by the car in front. Fortunately we weren’t going that fast as my seatbelt didn’t work, and neither party were injured. My new buddy was a bit shaken up however, and so after we dropped the cacao at the drying house, he refused to drive me home. Buses aren’t very frequent here and so to kill the hour and a half wait, we went to a bar round the corner from his, and he treated me to a couple of beers. Which was nice. Well for me anyway. Poor old Dom was sat at home getting a bit concerned. It was quite late at this point and neither of us have working phones so I couldn’t tell her I wouldn’t be getting home till about 8pm. It was a long day and I’m not used to working so much, so I only had enough energy to eat my dinner before hitting the hay.
Sunday was Mothers Day in the UK so I gave my lovely mum a call and had a nice little chat with her. We also spoke to our good pal Sophie and Dom’s sister Claire along with her long suffering husband Gary. The sun was shining and Sunday was the new Saturday for one weekend only, so once we had bid a fond farewell to everyone, we went in search of something to drink. We found a little bar with ‘Happy Hour’ in full swing and decided to have a couple of rums there. The term ‘Happy Hour’ was a little bit misleading. It should’ve been renamed ‘Unappealing Deal Hour’ as it was only 50 cents off drinks prices. What a swizz. We still stayed for a few drinks and our dinner though.
From that bar we moved on to a hostel where we had another drink and a couple of games of pool. We also bought Pulp Fiction there which was the most exciting thing we have done here so far. Alas, the DVD was scratched more than my mosquito bitten legs and we never got the chance to watch it. A sad end to an otherwise pretty good weekend. Monday saw us do more time consuming washing, job applications and run out of gas, so I won’t even bother boring you with that shit.
As you were……