Tuesday, September 09, 2008

You Better Belize It

Belize Part II

Remember last year's sighting of the crab? Well, we saw about 3 trillion crabs on this trip, though none quite as large. They were smaller, lived in holes in the sand, and moved like puffs of dust on the beach. We continually thought these were balls of fluff but no, they're crabs. Too bad i don't have a picture though.

However, this was my favorite of all.

here's what i'm saying, if you can't tell:

"Just a shell on the beach. Just a boring shell... or IS it??"

he was the tiniest cutest thing I'd ever seen. I saw him moving along and was like, what the--what is that? SO CUTE!!

I picked him up and he held onto my finger like a baby. I brought him back to Sean and said, "Can we keep him? pleeeeease?" Sean said to me, "No, Jen. What would you feed him?" And I said, "nuts and berries." Sean said, "Mm.. no...maybe if he was a bear cub..."

He was adorable. I named him Crabby, but he was anything but.

Beach quote

SEAN: "Sometimes I'd like a whole team, a cabinet of scientists around me, because I have a lot of questions. Like right now, I have a lot of questions about palm trees and I want some answers."

I made fun of him a lot for that and announced the Nerd Alert, but later, when I was inspecting Crabby, Sean said: "See? I bet you wish you had your cabinet zoologist right now!"

This was the only picture I got of our hotel.

Our room is in the middle on the second floor.

Beach incident & quote

Tonight when we were returning from dinner and going up the steps to our room, some black winged creature attacked me in the face, or came really close to it. As I was screeching and shielding my face, diving out of the way, Sean said, "That... is a bat." Then, "No... no wait. False alarm, it's a butterfly." I was then attacked again. As I squawked & dodged I said, "No WAY is that a butterfly. Butterflies flutter by. They do not dive bomb." Sean said, "yeah... must have been a bat." Discussion continues upon entering the room, and we discuss how strange it was and what exactly it could have been, but we're 90% sure it was a bat.

I then said, "The weird thing about all of this is usually bats are my friends."
Sean said, "haha what the--that goes in the quote book."

It's true, though.

As mentioned, there was a nice grocery store where we could purchase food items. They had food that was familiar to us but cost triple the amount we were used to. So you can get things you're used to but pay a lot of money, or get strange things that might be a bit sketchy for cheap. It's a gamble. I'm not sure what's going on with this ketchup. Is it a new kind? Does it use a new, genetically altered tomato that happens to be gray? Are they getting ready for the holidays and this is a Halloween-themed bottle of ketchup? I don't know, but i dare say i was a little sketched out.

pretty water.

As last year, I couldn't believe how insanely warm the Caribbean Sea was. It's weird when you swim in super warm water and then a wave comes splashing in your mouth and you gag on all the salt. Up until then, the only bodies of salt water i'd swam in were in oceans on the east and west coast and there it is frigid-city. And I swam my whole life in the sweet beautiful warm water of Lake Powell but that's fresh. So this weirded me out. "Who put all the salt in??" I would say.

I had crazy crazy fun hair in Belize. I loved it. It was like medusa hair but instead of snakes, there's just hair.

Recipe for Jen's crazy medusa hair:

1. Swim in the salty sea
2. Rinse (but don't shampoo) off in shower
3. Wrap hair in towel
4. Pass out on the bed for a 2-hr nap.

Speaking of sleep, I can't BELIEVE how much we slept on this vacation. Either we're boring and old or the heat and sun just completely wipes you out. The first night we slept from 7:30 to 7am. HA! But we had gotten 2 hours of sleep the night before. But still, every evening after dinner we were exhausted. And we'd hit the sack at 9:00 every night. That was definitely one of the highlights of the trip. We would joke, "man, why am i so tired today? Oh, because I didn't get our standard TWELVE hours of sleep last night. Only 9." We also learned that siestas are vital for your survival when it's 300 degrees outside with 300% humidity. ai ai ai.

As we were walking back along the beaches from the restaurant one night, I looked down in the dark shallow waters and spotted a sting ray up to the edge. It was a dark blob and I saw it and it was super cool. The next night, we passed the same spot and Sean mentioned the incident and commended me on my stellar night vision.

SEAN: "That's where you spotted the sting ray."

JEN: "That was so cool. Night ray... Sting ray of the night! ... what a tramp."

SEAN: "Trashy sting ray."

Speaking of rays, one crazy fun activity we participated in was a bit of snorkeling.
Here we are on the pier waiting for our ride.

We visited Hol Chan and Sharkray Alley. We got in the boat with a few other people, the guide gave us our equipment & instructions (and to Sean special prescription goggles-haha) and we jumped in. SO COOL. I could have stayed there all day for the rest of my life.

Sadly i did not think to purchase an underwater camera so I'm stealing these pictures off of Google. It's exactly what it looked like.

One of the guides would swim down with tiny fish to feed and the sting rays would come up to him and he'd feed them by hand. I flippered my way over to him and pet the sting ray. I love the sting rays. (p.s. they are slimy)

They are so beautiful. They are kind of like underwater butterflies, in a way, because they're so graceful.

We saw gorgeous fish. Bright blue fish, yellow fish, rainbow-colored fish. We swam amidst huge swarms of minnows. Swarms? Schools. There it is. Anyway, they were like glittering pieces of silver and you reached out to touch them and they'd move out of your grasp but still surround you. LOVED IT. It was magical. Someone saw an octopus though I did not (jealous), but I did see a little sea turtle in the distance. I then gurgled a noise and frantically tried to get Sean's attention but the turtle was gone.

Speaking of gurgling, It's funny when you snorkel, which I had never done before, because you try to communicate while swimming and it's ridiculous. You can't. So later we were having lunch and said that when going snorkeling, you need to develop some kind of snorkel language that you know beforehand so you can talk to each other. Here's what we came up with:

To smile: draw a curved line in the water out to the side. I did it in front of my face but Sean said, "no, that is telling me that you're going to kill me." (like cutting off your head) Ha ha.

Laughing: sort of laughing with your hand, like a claw. I mean, your hand looks like a claw but you're making it into a mouth. Claws do not laugh, to my knowledge.

If you want to say "Look over there!" you just point. This is easier said than done. I tried to do this several times and then got turned around and lost the thing i had been looking at.

If you want to say "cool!" spell it out in sign language.
We had a symbol for a shark and a ray.

Speaking of sharks, yes, we swam with sharks. It was AWE-SOME! Sean petted one but i did not. Again, jealous. I was off by myself getting lost or caught in the current. Sean was very concerned that I was not keeping up with the group but I wanted to go off on my own and pretend I was a fish. Here are some pictures i took and also some video.

(do you like how i try to show my smarts by saying, "ah, viviporous." so lame. But it's not the first or second or even third time that I've recalled something from this book that has been useful to me. Seriously, it's a little weird. One time in my zoology class the teacher said, "There are 2 species of mammals that lay eggs--" and i totally cut him off and I raised my hand frantically like a 1st grader and said, "Oooh! I know what they are!" and he said, "please share" and I said, "spiny anteater and duckbill platypus." all proud. Maybe i'm a dork but i felt smart that day, all thanks to that book.)

To read about another super fun activity we participated in, tune in... sometime soon.


Anonymous said...

Looks like such a fun trip! I think you missed the last part of the crab video in your transcription... I believe the words are: "Doot-deet-doot, do-doot-deet-doot."

)en said...

GOodness, you're right. If you don't know what I'm saying there, then none of it will make any sense.

Actually, i wasn't even saying anything. That's the sound the crab makes when he walks. Crazy, eh.

Michelle said...

How fun! So....were you confused that the underwater butterfly, the stingray, was a bat too?

)en said...

Ha! No, but i did think of that after typing it... very nice.

Brooke said...

My favorite part of this post is the picture wherein Sean has the beginnings of a mustache. Rockin' look, Sean. You should really try that more often.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Brooke!

I would also like to thank my upper lip for it's unsolicited contribution to bringing me this compliment.

Amy said...

Those stingrays are so awesome! Those are cool pics.

KamilahNYC said...

Amazing underwater adventures! I feel like I just watched a funny version of Planet Earth. So, great. I know that I find weird things very funny, but I died at the ketchup bottle. Amazing!