Monday, February 27

Xunantunich

Here's a guy that looks like me only fatter and redder in front of the Mayan ruin of Xunantunich.

The day began with fried jack for breakfast. Must google that when I get home to discover what the hell it was.

With Charlton driving and Tino as our tour guide, we began the 3 hour ride traversing Belize's 2 (yes they have 2) roads to the excavation site.

That thing is steep, and the Mayans didn't seem to care much for hand rails. Wearing a pair of flimsy sneakers after a tropical rainfall, I slippily climbed up the ruin to find a guy with a machine gun at the top. 1 guy guarding the site from a Guatemalan coup.

At lunch someone asked our 62 year old tour guide why he became a tour guide. "I was 14 when I ran away from home." Pages of a calendar flip by, "And then at 17 ... it was 2pm 21 miles from my home town." I realize I need to shave this story is going on so long ... "9 kids with same woman .... I realize I didn't answer your question yet". Don't worry Tino the woman who asked has left already.

Monkeys are to Belize as moose are to Maine. There's plenty of them, but I never see them.

Postscript. Prince Harry showed up a few days after the Aceman! You're the 2nd pasty red-headed Brit this week mate.

Sunday, February 26

Mad dogs and Englishman

Burn baby burn. I unevenly sprayed the SPF 15 and then sat in the sun for 3 hours.

At the height of the heat we went for a beach walk and was followed by the littlest hobo which attracted a bunch of other dogs.

You know that moment when you get back to your room after a sweltering day in the sun and you see yourself in the mirror? Yeah. I got my personal best.

For dinner we had barracuda and calamari and dined with the nice couple from VT that we met on the puddle jumper to Dangriga

I told them I was going to watch the Oscars and then felt like shit when they said they had no TV in their suite.

The Oscars ran long. Even on Central Time, on vaca, with no work the next day I resented staying up so long. But I needn't have worried. I couldn't sleep because of my sun burn.

Saturday, February 25

Dont go chasing waterfalls

Belize City airport is like the set of "It Ain't Half Hot Mum", the tepid 70s British sit-com.

Next we had to fly to Dangriga. "Want to go now?" said the beautiful mustached Belizean lady.

Sure! And only 10 minutes after landing, we had de-planed, cleared Customs, gone back through security and we were walking on the same tarmac back to a 10 seat plane.



In Dangriga, a guy called Charlton dropped our bags into his Mitsubishi. And there we were barreling along an unpaved road with no seat belts, in a 4x4, in Central America ... just like Lisa 'Left Eye' Lopes. Only with a nice couple from Vermont.

But a cold Belikin Beer on welcome from Delcie and we were no longer strangers in paradise.

The accom is wonderful if a little creaky. It reminded me of our 1st Wedding Anniversary in the Cotswolds. We had a 4 poster bed that creaked so loud that you only had to climb in and the hotel thought you were having an orgy in the room.

Tonight the food was a little like watching Fawlty Towers. And the chef came and asked if the food was good (like we'd say no!).

6 large local ladies in colorful dresses and a guy with a big drum started some drumming and dancing. We left. After a few rum punches I don't need any culture.

The valve is not working ...

It's so damn early that even the birds were telling us to shh as we set off for Logan. We're heading for Belize today, and we appear to have wrangled a First Class upgrade. What could go wrong?

"Hot nuts sir?", said the flight attendant. And before I had a chance to draw a giggle from my holster she popped a ramekin down on the divider.

And with warm nuts in my mouth, I relaxed as we taxied away from the gate en route for a week of sun ... only to hear the pilot let us know that something wasn't working.

"Not sure if it's important be we figure we should go back and check", said the guy with the wings.

The engineers aren't 100% positive either. Suddenly they're fingering through a Haynes manual for a 737.

We left late and so we missed the connection in Miami. Consequently I had to phone the resort in Belize. My fluency in Creole translated back to English was "Don't worry".

Miami is awesome. Full of perma-tanned twits who think they are Don Johnson ... if only Don Johnson was an overweight middle eastern guy.



These 2 playas were sat next to us in Row 1. iPods playing Euro trash house music, turned up to 11. That relentless tinny beat of "pechu, pechu" filtering through their Bose headsets as the poor flight attendant tries to demonstrate where the doors are on the plane before passing hot towels with a pair of tongs.

It was not sunny on the plane, but these nozzles kept the Ray-Bans primed all the way to Belize City.

Also, tampering with, disabling or destroying the lavatory smoke detectors is prohibited by law. We really need all 3 of those? I'd leave it at tampering, you cannot do the other 2 without a bit of tampering.

Wednesday, February 22

Things Americans are scared of

Whenever I'm down or worried by my neurotic fear of the substantial problems that could impact my life, I turn to Budget Travel for the remedy.

Their reader's tip page is full of pointless angst, and curiously pointed xenophobia.

This example is the former. Greg of Pennsylvania writes about the biggest concern of the traveler in these troubled times ... spoiled food in the freezer.

Sunday, February 19

Circle Jerk

Walking is the new running. In an effort to get more exercise I'm currently in the middle of a walking phase.

Saturday I decided to walk rather than drive. My main objectives were an appointment near Central Square and then to pick up the previously mentioned Belize Dollars from our one bank branch on Boylston in Boston.

Apparently banks observe President's Day on the Monday it falls ... and the Saturday before.

So sure, my walk had no real point, it was just one big circular work-out, but armed with headphones full of tunes and a mind full of judgment at the various fitness outfits adorned by runners and walkers I had a fun 6.5 mile walk on a sunny winter day.

Wednesday, February 15

This is how we do it

How come my accountant doesn't do this?



608

She says neurotic, I say super-organized, either way I'm preparing for our forthcoming trip to Central America.

I'm hardly Che Guevara, instead were heading to a quiet yet remote resort in Belize.

My tireless research discovered that the place where we are staying has no ATM machines, so we need some local currency before we get there.

I e-mailed my personal banker (I still get a kick saying that), and ordered 700 Belize Dollars.

An hour later they called me back to say that the Boston International Currency Exchange only has 608 Belize Dollars, and would I like to order all of them?

The whole banking industry in Boston only has 608 Belize Dollars?

I've grabbed them all, so if you're in Boston on the search for Belize Dollars, I'm yer man.

Tuesday, February 14

Wicky-wicky-wah-wah

I innocently clicked on a BBC story about nice Valentine's Day places to visit.

It took me to this place.



Maybe it's the puritan in me or the repressed Englishman, but this place looks decidedly dodgy to me.

A 7ft tall Champagne glass bath tub in your room is creepy. You know it's going to be filled with soap, Champagne and semen. And how do you get out of it? A round bottomed (snicker) bathtub is a bitch to get out of.

And yes, those are mirrored slats, so when you're getting it on, you look like the opening credits of Dynasty.

I love that they throw in another heart shaped pool in the room ... in case you have a few couples come over?

And all of your spunky suds are going to wash over onto the carpeting below.



Who knew Southern PA was such a den of depravity? Although I did notice all of the couples are hetro on the website.

It would be creepy to go there on your own. You know. If business took you to Southern PA. It's the sort of hotel where they'd say "Ah, welcome back Mr Taylor, would you like your usual suite for one", just as the busload of swingers walked by in silk robes and cravats.

Sodom and Gomorrah rages around you in every other room, meanwhile you're 7ft in the air with your ass squished against the clear plastic when the maid comes in.

Yeah, she's flashing her fella. Probably has a Champagne glass pubic sculpture.



If you want to check out their range of mirrored ceiling rooms see below or head on over to www.covepoconoresorts.com



"It won't fit in my mouth."
"Sure it will."

Monday, February 13

Black History Month

I dig it.

But do we really need a TV show about the first African-American female professional stock car driver?



I look forward to the interview with Maine's premier Spanish speaking moose hunter during Latino appreciation week.

Sunday, February 12

Did one of the Cool Js die?

Start of the Grammys and LL Cool J just said one of his family has died.

So our under/over on people mentioning Whitney is 20. Interesting they all loved her, yet they did fuck all to get her into rehab for the past 15 years.

Of course Bruce started by shouting, "America are you alive?", guess he didn't get the memo.

Nice job Bonnie Raitt reminding us that Etta James died of leukemia, rather than taking a few too many Xanax ...

Big cheers for Chris Brown from a crowd that's clearly forgotten why he missed the show in 2009.

Marc Anthony is Steve Buscemi with a suntan and chest waxing.

First hour of the Grammy's and it's 4 shout outs for dead Whitney; LL, Bruno, Keys (Alicia not Florida) and Tina Turner ... what? That was Rihanna?

Anne just suggested that Chris Martin sounds a 'bit pitchy', she's not wrong and he deserves the 'dick quotes'.

Holy moly, I just listened to Willie Nelson sing a Coldplay song for the up-market Taco Bell, Chipotle. The IRS have a check in the mail.

Who knew Mumford & Sons would be such Giants fans?

The Maroon 5 guy just raped the Little Surfer Girl. Wouldn't it be nice if Foster the People didn't perform this song? The Beach Boys look like they're wearing free merch from a Lake Tahoe casino.

You cannot sing a "new" standard. And for that matter Sir Paul cannot sing an old standard.

Hey look, Chris Brown just beat some more people at the Grammys.

Taylor Swift; dress by JC Penney; set by Cracker Barrel.

Adele just got a bigger ovation than Whitney. Rightly.

Saturday, February 11

Damn

Over Christmas, me and my Dad, or my father and I depending on your level of education ... were flicking TV channels in the middle of the afternoon, and we landed on Family Feud (Family Fortunes to the Brits). Since then it has become a small obsession.

It's on mainstream TV in the afternoon, but they've slightly tweaked the format from the safe, PG friendly version we all grew up with.

Steve Harvey presents the show and each question is loaded with innuendo and single entendre.

Name something you do naked on a hot day
Name something a woman is happy to be told she has a nice pair of
We asked 100 men on a scale of 1 to 10 how do they look in a thong

That's a sample of this week's show. It's like that every week.

Even the computerized board gets in on the game. You say penis, it says doo-dongle; you say sex, it says getting' it on; you say breasts, it says boobies.

I had to check that the game wasn't a re-run from the 90's. All the contestants wear what I'd classify as their 'court appearance clothes', an oversized shirt and tie, paired with baggy-legged chinos.

I could put any 1 of a 100 YouTube clips here, instead just go to the Family Feud YouTube page, and wallow in saucy humor. It's like the game show version of the Carry On movies.

Wednesday, February 8

Wow. Dick move.

An on-line retailer dropped 900lbs of Butterfinger onto Copley Square yesterday to commemorate Wes Welker 'dropping the SuperBowl' on Sunday night.

Douché.



Thursday, February 2

Correspondence

Urged on by some type of Facebook viral article, Anne has decided to mail (and presumably write) a letter a day during February. Of course there are Sundays and public holidays that won't count, and we bugger off to Belize at the end of the month, but as usual I digress.

I received a letter from my wife today, and what a lovely and reminiscing thing it was.

I forget that we have boxes of letters from the mid 90's when we lived on different continents, with no e-mail, and a limited phone budget. Each day I'd get home from work and hope there would be an envelope with neatly applied exotic stamps in the top right corner and 'Broderick' in the top left.

We wrote to each other about 10 times a month, for about 2 years, and always found sparkling new content.

Today, Anne's handwriting still has the same squiggly readability and as probably only a writer can, she manages to make the simplest of actions seem exciting and profound.

And she has never been happier. Ironically writing has been replaced by caring for kittens of all shapes, ages and sizes. Her business is booming and she has a long list of happy clients and even happier cats.

Think I'll go read my letter again, and start to formulate a reply. If only my handwriting stood the test of time ...

Wednesday, February 1

Wise Words

I was listening to an interview with a comedian today.

Interviewer: It must take great courage and guts to do improv?

Comedian: Not really, because if that was the case General Patton would have done it wouldn't he?