When I got to Houston, I checked the status of my luggage. It was still in Phoenix. By the time my flight to Belize took off, my Phoenix flight was only half way to Houston.
After arriving in Belize City, sans luggage, I hopped a flight to Dangriga. It's not often you get to see the pilot's view as you approach the airport. It's also not often that you see the runway ending so close to the ocean.
Just about to touch down at Dangriga.
The pilot offered to let a passenger sit in the front seat, but nobody took him up on the offer.
Once I was safely on the ground at Dangriga, I needed to figure out where to catch the bus to Maya Center. I decided it would be easiest to just take a cab to the bus station. I had about an hour wait before my bus (an old school bus) so I shopped for some basics like shampoo, deodorant, and bug spray.
My first stop in Belize was at Tutzil Nah Cottages in Maya Center. At $15 a night, this should be interesting!
My room was very basic, but clean. The room contained a bed, a table and chair, and a fan. The fluorescent light required that you play with it a bit in order to turn it on. The bathroom and shower were in separate buildings across the courtyard. The shower was cold water only and the bathroom was basically a concrete block outhouse, but had a flush toilet.
My host and guide was Gregorio Chun. His children, Fiona (age 6), Daniel (age 5, not shown), and Gabriel (age 3) were delightful, and I spent afternoons and evenings playing with them. They really enjoyed the books and flashcards I brought them.
I played several games with the local children. One was "bat" which was really softball, but they used an orange as the ball (could be blinding if it sprayed juice as you hit it) and a broom handle as the bat. We also played soccer and practiced math and reading.