I came to Belize right after independence to help my biologist friend Dr. Rob Horwich, co-founder of the Community Baboon Sanctuary in Bermudian Landing, however I could. I wrote news releases for the opening of the sanctuary for Radio Belize on an old typewriter in the Belize Audubon Society office in Belize City and met people around the country working to preserve the natural resources of this beautiful country. The next time I came to Belize, I stayed with the sisters at the old Pallotti Convent as part of a project to design a study program in Belize for biology students at Viterbo College, Wisconsin. I have been back many times and spent my honeymoon, at the age of 67, on Glover’s Reef.
Now if I return I must stay in some overpriced “gold” resort. I have never looked for the upscale, touristy places or the company of people who wish to insulate themselves and be insulated in some kind of plastic bubble. How awful. The pandemic has changed the world around us, but I longed for one more trip to Belize before I am too ancient to get around. This new lodging policy for travelers like me has ended that hope for now. So many places and people I have known through the years are left off this list. I wonder what will happen to old friends who used to greet us with such warm hospitality.
I still hope to be back someday and am hoping the effort to corral visitors into vacuum-sealed locations ends soon.
Until then, my heart goes out to Belize and the wonderful people of Belize.