Some of my favorite photos and memories from Belize.


An osprey with at least one young one in its nest on Caye Caulker

R loved the osprey. Two days into our trip, he said that watching it feed its baby would be his favorite memory.

Golf cart on Caye Caulker

Checking out the paintings on a house during our tour of the backroads of Caye Caulker

We rented a golf cart and explored the entire island at golf cart speed. The day we were supposed to pay for the boat ride, credit card machines were down throughout Belize, so most of the boaters had to go to the ATM to get cash. We got there first and when I walked out and saw the line, I felt guilty over having cleaned out the ATM of $50s. But S pointed out that if we’d been playing the Amazing Race, we would have just scored big.

Blurry R and me at hermit crabs

R and me having a moment of discovery

R found hermit crabs. Looking down into the shallow tidal pool, I spotted a couple, then a few more, then dozens, then maybe hundreds. They were everywhere. Later in the trip, I was in the water when something bit me, hard. I’m pretty sure it was a much bigger hermit crab. R said he saw a huge one.


Terry's Grill

Lunch at Terry’s Grill

Terry’s Grill — a guy with a grill and a picnic table on the beach, currently rated the #2 restaurant on Caye Caulker on TripAdvisor. I had the grilled shrimp and it was one of my favorite meals of a trip that included many, many good meals.


Rory and me on the boat

R and me sitting on the sailboat

The Ragga Queen took us down the coast to Placencia and reminded me of how much I love being out on the ocean. I could spend endless hours watching water, lost in my daydreams. Someday, although maybe in 2014 at the rate at which I’m currently writing, I’ll be working on a book called “A Lonely Magic” about a girl named Fen (nicknamed) who finds out the world is a much bigger place than she ever imagined when she meets a boy on a Chicago street and gets whisked off into his life. Credit will be due the lovely hours on the Ragga Queen, cradled in the waves.


Tobacco Caye tents

Those tents look even tinier in the picture than they did in real life

Our tents on Tobacco Caye. I’m not sure I’d actually call the tents a favorite memory: wow, it was hot and uncomfortable during the night. But wandering the island and snorkeling, sitting on the dock with R, watching the birds swoop down for the fish guts and the rays glide by in the water — lots of good stuff about the island.


Bicycle parking

Bicycle parking at the Tipsy Tuna

Placencia. We didn’t ride bicycles, but the colors and the sign are a pretty perfect representation of the town. It used to be isolated — the only way to get there was over a dirt road that killed cars quickly or by boat. But Francis Ford Coppola built some fancy resort up the coast in Maya Beach and started a building boom. Five years from now Placencia might be awful — totally touristy, completely artificial. But at the moment, it felt like a magical little town, colorful and bright and cheerful.


Me and Suzanne on the back, coconut basil mojito

Our last afternoon, sitting in beach chairs, watching the water and drinking tropical fruity drinks

That drink between S and me is a coconut basil mojito. I tried it because it sounded so weird, it was impossible to resist. It was delicious, although heavy on the greenery. Maybe all the basil made it healthy?