For some reason, in the bottom of my travel toiletries bag, covered in toothpaste juice stains, there was a tiny unopened plastic packet containing E.A.R Soft SuperFit ear plugs. I was lying in bed last night, drawing and listening to My Bloody Valentine, and I thought about the ear plugs: Am I just imagining it, or are they in my toiletries bag? I’d got the ear plugs in 2009, when my ex and I went to see My Bloody Valentine play in Seattle. I’d grabbed a few pairs from the baskets outside the area where the band would be playing, mostly because they were pretty. Bright yellow with an orange band and nice and squishy. I broke them out, and thus—placebo or not—had a lovely night’s sleep. I love the dreams, those that you cling onto the lovely feeling all day long, where something good happens. In mine I met a Bulgarian woman, a woman who I recognised. She had short brown hair, strong cheekbones and lovely dark eyes. And we recognised each other from college. She was the border guard as I entered Monaco. And she had a smile that stayed with me into the awake part of my day. All else I remember is that Monaco’s supermarket was really crappy, and the pools around the many, many fountains were all full of algae. Oh, and that I met a guy who seemed really friendly, and he wanted to blow me. And I let him.
Nice lazy day. Good to be having some lazy beach time. Spent a good deal of time alone in a hammock. And swinging in that hammock, in a palapa at the end of a pier, watching waves go by, I listened to DJ Earworm’s awesome “United States of Pop” songs—2007, 2008, and 2009 versions— and was singing to myself. The hotel restaurant wasn’t busy, and there was nobody in earshot, so I was singing moderately loudly. If, though, people had heard me, and weren’t aware of the Earworm mixes, they may have been confused. Not as confused as the Mayan woman who was walking behind on the beach a bit later must’ve been, though. She was trying to attract my attention so she could try and sell me some trinkets. As I walked along what I assumed was a deserted beach, I was listening to Ludacris’ “One More Drink” and singing the chorus: If I take one more drink/I’m gonna end up fuckin’ you/Is that what you wanna do, shorty.
Most inappropriate-for-the-beach music I’ve listened to so far on headphones: “The Holy Bible” by Manic Street Preachers.
Listening to “I Want You to Want Me” by Cheap Trick makes me feel really nice inside my head.
I’ve never had an insect bite on a mole. I wonder if they deliberately avoid them for some reason? Are mosquitoes racist? Or have I just been lucky?
I bought some Flamin’ Hot Funyuns. I’ve eaten Funyuns before. They’re alright. But I do really like another of Frito Lay, Inc.’s products: Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. So I figured I’d give them a go. The back of the packet says this:
Finally – the zesty taste of FUNYUNS® brand Onion Flavored Rings you’ve known for years has been set on FIRE!
FLAMIN’ HOT® FUNYUNS® brand Onion Flavored Rings deliver the crispy texture and shape of an onion ring with a sizzle that will set your mouth on fire.
Yep, they’re kinda spicy. Not as spicy as the Cheetos, but still pretty good. After eating a couple of handfuls, though, I noticed my mouth not actually on fire. I checked the packet for a disclaimer. There was none. The packet clearly stated that the snacks contained within would “set [my] mouth on fire.” There was no fire in my mouth. Not even anything resembling a fire. Just pinky-orange goop on my tongue. The sort of goop that looks like you’ve been eating a salmon-coloured Crayola crayon when you spit it out into the sea when you are swimming ten minutes later.
Late afternoon we took a boat trip. Most trips are kinda spendy, but an American dude with a good beard was doing a “sunset boat trip” around the lagoon for $25 (about eight quid). And very nice it was too. Saw a stingray leaping out of the water, lots of mangrove, and a very pleasant sunset, with a nice amount of clouds to make some lovely crepuscular rays. And it was nice to hear the wind making my beer bottle whistle, as I sat with legs dangling off the front of the boat, only momentarily dreaming that I was Simon Le Bon. The guy sailing the boat, the guy with the good beard, was called Jeff. He’d originally sailed a boat (a different one) all the way down here from Kansas City, which, by my calculations, is quite a long way. But man, that sounds like a cool trip to make.
We ate in a Mexican restaurant called Habanero’s. It was okay. It was kind of expensive, though. Belize seems to be expensive. Considering the country seems, at a cursory glance, to be only a couple of steps up from third world, the prices are only a couple of notches down from the prices in States and Canada. Certainly for me, living in Mexico, this has been an expensive holiday, only heightened by seeing the menu at a Mexican restaurant: tacos al pastor were BZ$23 (£7.32/€8.58/US$8.58/MX$142), whereas my excellent local taco restaurant sells them at 11.50 pesos each (£0.59/€0.70/US$0.95/BZ$1.86).
All of this, though is me mentally gearing up to have a good moan at the airport later this week. Belize has an exit fee that you must pay before getting your flight out of here. I’d been told it was 40 dollars and assumed that it meant BZ$40. But, checking online, it’s US dollars. Someone also told us we have to pay with US dollars. That is a currency openly used here, and it’s easy: two Belize equals one US. But if it is true that one has to pay the exit shakedown with US dollars, well, that’s inconvenient. Mostly because I’d rather get rid of my Belizean dollars. And, let’s not underestimate this, because sometimes, I kinda like to think of the mapped route of a heated discussion in advance. There’s an element of indignant apoplexy that I’m looking forward to expressing. Stupid, really. But, y’know, for a country that gains a not insignificant amount of money from tourism, it seems counterproductive that a visitor’s last impression of the country is to be tipped upside down for some last spending. I also wonder if having to pay in US dollars is a way to leave visitors with more Belizean dollars in their pocket than they’d anticipated, thus provoking gift shop and restaurant sales in the departure lounge to get rid of a currency tourists no longer need.
On a lighter note, I’ve got a doctor fly bite on my hand. All swollen and puffy. Feels like a big bruise. I will, I have been assured by a local, not die. Ever. I now have doctor fly DNA in my veins, and thus will be able to diagnose and treat any virus that attacks my body. I am now imortal. Which is nice to know. Maybe I’ll be alive long enough to see Liverpool win the league again. Maybe…