We'd had a wonderful time on our first trip to the Toledo District of Belize and re-visiting the Stann Creek District we'd previously enjoyed, but a week had flown by, and it was now time to head back north to Ambergris Caye.
We had to get up quite early to catch the Hokey Pokey water taxi from Placencia to Independence as we wanted to catch the 7:30 am Express bus to Belize City. The Hokey Pokey leaves at 6:45 am, and we had to walk to the dock. That left us no time for breakfast -- or even coffee -- before leaving. Fortunately we'd bought some fiber cookies at the grocery store the day before, and I lucked out -- an enterprising local was selling cups of steaming hot coffee as we got onto the bus for just $1.50 BZ (75 cents US). Sold! Yes, it had sugar, which I usually don't take, but I didn't care. It tasted good, and the caffeine was what I was after anyway.
It had rained quite a bit overnight, but fortunately had stopped in time for our walk to the dock and ride on the ferry. We met up with the traveling Canadian girls, Heather and Lauren, at the dock, and traded experiences. We find we have more in common with travelers their age than our own in many ways.
Walking the Placencia sidewalk
Heather, Lauren, and me
Hokey Pokey dock
Walking the very potholed road in Independence towards the bus stop
We just barely made it to the stop in time to catch the James Express bus, and it was so crowded we didn't get to sit together until it stopped in Dangriga. Like our previous experience in Independence, this bus actually leaves well before the scheduled departure time of 7:30 am. I guess they are trying to make up time on the route, because we still didn't make it back to Belize City early; in fact, we got there a bit later than the scheduled time.
Nicer seats on the Express - and A/C!
We liked this t-shirt on a fellow bus rider
The scenery on the trip north is gorgeous. We managed to get a few decent shots out the windows of the bus (and a lot of bad ones, but won't subject you to 'em, of course!)
Your intrepid travelers
We'd told Heather and Lauren that we'd lead them through the streets of Belize City if they wanted to walk to the water taxi terminal with us rather than taking a taxi, and they did. We'd all be taking the same ferry even though they were getting off at Caye Caulker, and we'd be staying on until the San Pedro terminus.
Their packs were quite a bit bigger than ours
Ready to walk -- tired of sitting on my butt!
Walking in Belize City
Emily and Lauren
San Pedro Waterjets Express
Waiting in line
The ferry was especially crowded today with locals traveling since school is out and folks from all over Belize and other Central American countries coming to San Pedro for the annual Costa Maya festival
. There was a big group from El Salvador, judging from their t-shirts. We had to ride right in the front since we were one of the last on. We normally don't ride in front as it's a bouncier, less comfortable ride, but we had no choice this time.
Heather and Lauren
Back in San Pedro
After the ferry pulled into the dock at San Pedro, we walked over to pick up Paisley at Pampered Paws. She was happy to see us and knows the drill now of walking back through the busy streets on her leash to wait at the Coastal Xpress water taxi dock to take us back north of town to our condo. It was a hot day, but some shade and water helped. She loves her time at Pampered Paws but is always happy to be back with us and at home.
Paisley giving her mom some love
Here are a couple of photos the staff took of Paisley hanging out at Pampered Paws. She really seems to enjoy herself there, and as I've said before (several times), we're so glad they are there so we can leave her in a safe and fun place. We can tell that she's become a lot more sociable with other dogs since she's been going there regularly.
High energy play mode -- full on!
Relaxing in the garden
Stay tuned for birds and bug bites, still to come! (You can see a preview of the latter in the photo of me with Paisley above.)