After my last blog where I made it clear that I did not view Belize as somewhere I would re-locate in my retirement, I received a comment from a viewer asking if I had ever heard of the expression, “Different strokes for different folks”. My response was, “Yes”.
This is not about criticizing those who want to pick up and move to another country in their retirement. I don’t care. It’s their life and they can live it as they see fit. I’ve met many retirees who have chosen Belize as their retirement home and they seem quite happy.
This is about me and why I wouldn’t give retirement in Belize a second thought. In fact, that’s exactly what I said to my wife on our second visit to Belize about 15 years ago when she said, “I hope you aren’t thinking that we’ll sell our house and move here?’
I like Belize. A lot. That’s why after retirement we kept going back year after year and for the past 10 years for 2 months, leaving the Canadian winter behind to bask in its semitropical warmth.
In general, I like the Belizean people. They are hard-working, family-loving, law-abiding, warm and friendly. Sure there are bad uns amongst them. Sure there is crime and corruption as there is in any other country in the world. As a traveler to another land, you have to be aware of that and if you can’t accept it the best thing for you is to stay home.
I like the fact that in Belize, a former British colony, English is the language of instruction in the schools and in the legal system. Don’t get me wrong. Spanish is a powerful force in Belize and is spoken almost everywhere. As is Kriol, a language (some might say a patois) made out of indigenous languages and English. I’m just saying that in most circumstances while traveling around Belize it is likely that I would always be able to order a meal and a drink and still be able to talk to the server, the cook, the owner and the other customers if I would so wish. And I frequently do.
I like the shape and the size of Belize. It’s about the size of the province of New Brunswick, bordering Mexico on the east, Guatamal a on the north and west, and the great Caribbean Sea on the south with hundreds of islands or cayes within its off-shore boundaries. You can get from point A to point B easily within a relatively short period of time by bus, car (taxi or rental), water-taxi, or local airplane.
I like the weather. We’ve found from our experience in the first four months of the year that January can be problematic (a touch on the cool side) but February, March and the first couple weeks of April are the best times to vacation in Belize. The temperature ranges from the high 70’s to the low 90’s, averaging somewhere in the mid 80’s. The heat is often mitigated by downpours of rain or cloud bursts. In-land, from Corazal to Punta Gorda you can find refreshing waterfalls and rivers to splash in. Along the Caribbean coast and on the cayes, its sun, sea and sand, baby.
I like visiting Belize every winter for a couple of months. I look forward to it. We have friends there, some of whom we see more in our two-month visits than we see of our Canadian friends in a year.
But I wouldn’t dream of living there.
Why not?…to be continued
Take a quick trip to our virtual Café for a bite, or more