Looking Back – Episode 1

What it was like before Running Water & Electricity

Looking back on the last 30-odd years I’ve been pondering life in Belize when we first arrived.  Visitors to Belize Botanic Gardens often ask what it was like here in the days before electricity and running water… Well my favorite book growing up was Swiss Family Robinson so a family adventure always had a special appeal to me.

One big difference though was that the Robinson’s were shipwrecked on an island with a ship loaded with supplies.  When they ran out of good stuff – like fine wines, cheese, chocolate, as well as essential items , they merely rowed their dinghy out to the ship and brought back what they needed … while on the other hand, for us it was a hard-driven 10 miles to reach San Ignacio in an hour and change  (each-way),  with more riding  around town in order to find the basics … and there was definitely a shortage of fine wines and cheese!!

If there hadn’t been, we probably wouldn’t be as  fond of rice and  beans, tortillas and local rum as we are.

At that time had we known that it would be 8 months before our generator was up and running and a working water pump or that suppliers would refuse to deliver anything past the bottom of our famous hill would we have still bought the place?

We have a secret belief that  every mechanic in San Ignacio has a son or daughter with a graduate degree from a fine university and its from replacing worn out vehicle parts like shock-absorbers, tie rod ends, u-joints, etc. on our vehicles.  Parts that I didn’t even know existed, never mind that they needed to be replaced with such frequency, due to our chronic “bumpy” road conditions!

(Rattling on) And who needs to sponsor uniforms for a soccer team when you can support a local mechanic, making him feel like the most important person in your life?

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