Sunday, November 23, 2014

An UnBELIZEable Adventure Part I



"Traveling - it leaves you speechless then turns you into a storyteller." - Ibn Battuta
This quote perfectly describes the adventure my husband and I just went on over the last few weeks. This was my first visit out of the country so you can TOTALLY believe me when I say never before have I felt such a rush of adventure, relaxed beyond belief, feared for my life, and been more & more grateful with each new day for the many blessings the God Lord has given me than on our trip to Belize. Come enjoy the story with me!

Day 1: Walking off the plane instantly I knew that life here would NOT be the same.  We were greeted by our driver Ruben who escorted us to the van, gave us cold water, and these AMAZING frigid and glorious smelling towels to put around our necks to combat the heat.  As we sat and waited for the last couple to join us we chatted with another honeymooning couple about their life in Las Vegas in contrast with ours in good 'ol Wyoming.  Once the other couple from San Diego arrived we were off cruising along the Hummingbird Highway of Belize with eyes wide open to see ALL the things! One of the first things I saw were these children playing football (aka soccer in the USA).  Coming from a family of soccer fanatics it was new to me to see the children playing without shin guards and shoes on their feet. The next item that caught my attention was the brightly painted police station.  Looking at the size of it caught me by surprise and it made me wonder how large of an area the policemen had to look after... then we came across the prison. 










 Ruben, the driver, must have seen the wonder in my eyes when I read the words on the sign... Prison GIFT SHOP?!  He told us that is was the only Prison in Belize and it was a huge tourist attraction.  Edwin (one of the guests) made the joke, "I went to Prison in Belize and I'll I have to show is this stupid T-shirt."  We all laughed... but then in my mind I began to ask - is the prison so small and the only one because Belize safe or should we have brought our gun?!

View from our tree house.
 Pushing past that fear we continued on our way to  THIS fabulous place! (Hint...That's a link - you should click it.)  & our room... yeah THIS!!!!!  Of all the things in the room - the soaking tub on top of the roof (perfect for star gazing to the sweet tunes of Howler Monkeys) and the outside shower with the most incredible views & birds singing sweetly all around. (More awesome photos will be uploaded to Facebook shortly here.)  & the food guys... the 3 course meal of awesome that awaited us is undesirable with homemade cheeses to fresh fruits *wipes drool* there are no words but my thoughts were "I MUST EAT ALL THE THINGS!"

Day 2: It began with the sound of monkeys waking us up and what seemed like a hundred birds to sip our coffee with on the porch.  Seriously thought I was still dreaming when I woke up!  We went down to eat our breakfast again with all things tasting more than magnificent.  Then we were off on our first adventure...Jungle & Cave Hike PLUS Waterfall Jumping! 

BEFORE PHOTOS


Inside the cave is stunning, incredible, and as Julio our head tour guide says "UNBELIZEABLE!"  He took us into a portion of the cave that not many people get to see any more because it is up a steep clay wall.  Once we reached the top it was like a tsunami of history hit us with a raging force of AMAZING!  There were numerous fully intact fire spots where the Mayans came to burn their sacrifices.  On the stalactites we could see the black hue being covered by the new minerals.  Shattered pottery scatter the floor and they had piles of artifacts dating back to 950 A.D. some of the craziest being blood-letting needles used to pierce tongues and male genitalia.




Stalagmite forming on piece of pottery.
Snakes were thought to be sacrificed because of this finding.
Mayan blood-letting needles.






 There was only one piece of pottery in the entire cave that was completely intact.  It was amazing to see the detail the Mayans could put into their work from the indents in the beads to the designs on the pottery.  To stand before these historical pieces gave me chills to know how far we've come as humans.  I wonder what they would say if they saw the world this way.  Grateful to have had this brush with history & to see all the beautiful sights, even if just with my headlamp!
Jellyfish looking & they sparkled so beautifully! 






 After walking through & swimming at some points this phenomenally gorgeous cave we came to the part that is only for the very brave.  Climbing up the waterfalls and jumping back in - praying to God that we hit the hula-hooped sized hole exactly so we would not be maimed.  Our GoPro quit working & I so wish I could show you us jumping but here is a video of what it is like leaping into a pitch black uncertainty over the waterfalls - the highest being about 15 feet.   WHAT A RUSH - LITERALLY!!!  Seriously highly suggest this to any travel adventure enthusiast!




On our way out we met this little guy,
a scorpion-spider that Julio told be gets
up to 8 feet... then began counting each
leg laughing at my reaction. They are harmless.

AFTER PHOTOS


The bus ride home took us through a river (insert Chitty Chitty Bang Bang scene from Ace Ventura When Nature Calls Movie.)

That's all for now but I promise you more!  Stay tuned for the rest of our adventure... you won't want to miss the rest!  One final thought... all of the formations from the cave to everything that decorated to the history that was held in it reminded me of this verse Eccelsiates 3:11 He has made everything beautiful in its time.  He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from the beginning to the end.

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