It's hard to believe that I've been in Belize for nearly a month. Being a responsible immigrant, I ride my trusty bike to the Customs and Immigration Office to renew my passport for another 30 days. I have a wanderlust impulse to explore the Island further once that task is complete.
Ambergris Caye is divided into two branches - you're either "north of the bridge" or "south of the bridge". I live south of the bridge and had not yet ventured to the north end of the island. What a perfect day for an adventure!
Riding north through town I eventually reach the infamous "bridge". There is a fee assessed for vehicles to cross but not so for those on bicycles or on foot. The ride on the dirt road north of the bridge is quiet. Rarely do I pass big resorts, golf carts or bars that commonly line the streets south of the bridge. Most structures are private residences tucked away into the shrubbery. At a juncture in the road I encounter the Palapa Bar and make a mental note to visit this place on a future outing. Today my sights are set on visiting the Grand Caribe Resort and Cowboy Doug's bar which is well advertised locally.
Two miles into the ride I finally reach the Grand Caribe. Famished, hot and thirsty, I lock up the bike and venture into the cool, air conditioned and sophisticatedly decorated lobby enquiring where I might find something to eat and drink. The friendly staff points me in the direction of the ocean; just past the pool I spot the poolside bar and grill. Alas.
Entering Cowboy Doug's, I'm welcomed by an industrial sized fan that cools the air and thrusts the fragrance of freshly grilled food being cooked for the patrons. Plopping myself on a barstool, I order a glass of water and Belikin Stout with salt and lime. "That's an interesting way to drink Belikin Stout," Ada, the bartender, comments. "I shall not forget you, for sure," she says as she squeezes the juice of a fresh lime into the glass. Well, I guess everyone needs to be remembered for something. I ask for a menu and settle on ordering a Caesar salad with freshly grilled lobster. I was not disappointed in the least when my lunch was soon placed on the bar in front of me. It looked (and was) delish!
Ada, MC (fondly nick-named by his co-workers because of his resemblance to MC Hammer) and I quickly engaged in conversation and chatted about all things and nothing in particular. It was then that I noticed Ada's "blingy" fingernail art. She proceeded to tell me that she decorates her own nails and her I-Phone case was not to be outdone by her creativity. She excitedly agreed to let me take a picture of both so I could share it with my friends.
The four mile ride back home went rather quickly and I was cheerful that I had decided to venture north for the day. The next trip North I'll have to check out the Palapa Bar which, I hear, is a fun and lively place to visit. I'll be sure to report on that one.