Kayakers, sunbathers, partiers, families, grandparents, partners, spouses, kite boarders, bartenders, tourists, boaters, musicians, best friends, swimmers, off duty SCUBA instructors, lobster fishermen…
At some point everyone on the island makes their way to The Split. On this hot and sunny afternoon, nearly all the above do so.
This island, Caye (pronounced key) Caulker, a short ferry ride from Belize City, has been my home for about ten days and will be for weeks to come. The Split, a hundred yard gash splitting Caye Caulker, was initially carved by Hurricane Hattie in 1961 and is now a daily destination for many on the island, including me.
I came to Caye Caulker for several reasons; sun seeking and relaxing were just two. With crushed sea shell sand on the ground, reggae music setting the mood, and the stocked bar at the Lazy Lizard to keep everyone well lubricated under the sun, The Split offers both.
Caye Caulker, now two small islands separated by The Split, has less than 1000 full-time residents (nearly all residing on the southern island) and if I were to guess at the moment, two to three times that many visitors; and this is the off-season. It feels like a good number; I think the busy season would be too busy for my liking.
I fill my days meeting other travelers and locals at the beach, around town, or at a bar during the evening. Meeting people from around the world is one of the things I’ve missed most since traveling for nine months in 2013. Being able to sit at a table and talk with people from several different countries at the same time, makes for a great evening. For anyone who’s had a similar experience, you know it is, at the same time interesting and confusing. With so many accents, hearing what is meant can sometimes be difficult. It’s one of my favorite things to do while traveling.
Other than meeting and talking with people from around the world, taking photographs around town or hanging out at the beach happens nearly every day. The main reason though, for coming to a small island and staying roughly six times longer than the average traveler, was to write. Each day I spend a good chunk of time working on a project; one that may never be completed, and that’s okay. Like traveling in general, I feel the journey is the destination. This particular journey has me living on a Caribbean island for a month, so it is already a success!
This little story for the blog evolved while sitting at the beach and noticing the different people who were there. A single instant of inspiration in a place that is full of similarly inspiring moments. With any luck I’ll continue to get inspired to work on my project and to post some more stories on the website.