As Rob &
Sheralee’s departure was imminent Roger had to get them taken off the Liste de
Tribulantes (Crew List), so we all hopped aboard the Hokey Pokey water taxi and
went to the town of Independence.
What a waste of time
not to mention money, $12 each for the round trip plus US$10 for the taxi.
The police simply
told Roger to bring back the amended list when the boat leaves and
they would sign it. The town itself is a one horse town and was not worth
visiting, though Roger and Sheralee made themselves at
But I suppose we did
have a nice boat ride (we didn’t get wet once)!
That night we dined
at Wendy’s as a premature celebration of Sheralee’s 50th birthday and
mine (the day after each other). It is interesting that many of the businesses
in Placencia are owned by women, Wendy has her restaurant, Yoli has her bar etc
It is always
difficult writing retrospective blog entries, not because you can’t remember
what happened where, but more a case of when. You see time seems to expand and
contract and bears no resemblance to the time we all use shoreside. Days, weeks
and months seem to melt into one big blob!!! Perhaps it’s a symptom of that well
known cruisers disease, Cruiseheimers?!?!?!?!
However, there are
some events that stick out more than others as it always does when somebody
leaves and goes home. And so it was that we bid a very fond but sad farewell to
Rob & Sheralee. It was great having them with us and we will miss
We celebrated, oops
sorry, mourned, their departure with an impromptu night on the town. We went
along to The Purple Space Monkey about 14.00hrs to log on and sort out a few
bits and bobs, well at least that was the plan. But that is not how it worked
out. We left somewhere around midnight!!!!
They had a Karaoke
competition and the prize was $500.
Well a few people started going up and singing and while they weren’t too
bad they weren’t brilliant either. So I thought well if that’s the competition
I’ll have a go. So I went up and registered. The evening wore on and people were
still going up but I hadn’t been called, despite the same people going up many
times. Well it transpired that they were not the competitors, the competition
didn’t start until 21.30hrs. About 21.15hrs the place filled up and the real
competitors turned up.
Needless to say I
didn’t win, but had a lot of fun, didn’t disgrace myself (or embarrass Roger)
and met a few locals. Doyle (a cool dude who had been up a few times) even came
and did a duet with me. Sorry no photos as it was the one time I didn’t have my
camera (thank goodness)
Roger went off to
Indepenence to try and clear us out of Belize and had
quite the adventure. His taxi driver, a friendly chap who frequently tooted his
horn at his friends who were passing, gave Roger the ‘skinny’ on one young
When he tooted his
horn this one young lady waved from the balcony of her small house and blew him
a kiss. When Roger commented, he said ‘yes, she’s a nice lady. She comes from
Honduras, when men come from
Placencia she looks after them, yes she’s a very nice lady!!!’
Then, when Roger was
at the police station, they were tying up a woman. Apparently she is crazy and
attacks children on a regular basis and this time had been caught dragging a
young girl out of school by her hair.
Now, apparently when
you go to customs to clear out, if you are lucky the port captain is not sitting
on the steps and the customs clear you out and don’t charge you. Well that’s
what we have heard.
When Roger went there
was a group of young men, dressed in t-shirts and surfer shorts. The type of
young men that you would normally avoid. It transpired that one of them was the
port captain and so it was that Roger had to pay the US$45 after all. However,
we have to say that it was the most painless formalities we have encountered so
far. Roger caught the 10.00hrs Hokey Pokey water taxi, did the business, caught
the 11.00hrs water taxi back and was in the Purple Space Monkey for 11.20 hrs.
Whilst we are talking
about formalities I can now tell you about when we cleared into
Belize (didn’t want to publish
anything until we had left their waters) .
We cleared in at
Belize city. We
had anchored offshore and the weather was pretty bad (you can’t tell from the
photo but it was very windy and rocky rolly), but because it was coming up to
the Easter weekend and we had already had one unsuccessful attempt, Roger bit the bullet and took the dinghy
ashore as there were no water taxis.
We had been told that
when you go ashore you then go to the reception at the Hotel Radisson and they
call the officials to come down and meet you.
So Roger tried that,
only to be told by the receptionist that she couldn’t do that, but there was a
taxi outside who would take you to the offices. So Roger grabbed the cab and
headed off to the customs office, where he collected a rather surly female
customs officer and a quarantine (BAHA) officer. After that, they all went in
the cab to Immigration. The immigration officer was out, but it was arranged
that he would meet Roger back at the jetty in 15 mins. So the 3 (remember Roger,
the customs and the quarantine officer) of them got back in the cab and went to
the health department where they were joined by a health officer. Are you following
Once back in the cab
they all headed back to the jetty. When they got there the customs officer told
Roger he would have to get a big boat to take them to Beaujolais as there was no
way we would get 5 people in our dinghy beside which she didn’t want to get
Roger had already
established that there were no water taxis, so went along to the coast guard to
see if he could help. The guy was very helpful and agreed.
In the meantime the
officers had decided it was too rough to go out to the boat, so they all piled
into the coast guards office to complete the paper work, then back into the taxi
to go back to their respective offices to get official receipts. The whole
process took a lengthy 4 hrs!!!! And as a parting comment the customs officer,
who had signed the documents to say that they had actually visited the boat,
informed Roger that if we came back to Belize City we WOULD be boarded!!!!!