CTurner's Travel Journals


  • 26 years old
  • From California, United States
  • Currently in California, United States


A blog of my adventures while studying in San Ignacio, Belize.

Education and School

Belize San Ignacio, Belize  |  Feb 03, 2011
Share |

Choose a Different Location

  • Tips:

    zoom in
    zoom out
    pan map upward
    pan map to the left
    pan map to the right
    pan map downward
    * drag the map to move around
    * click on the map where the city that you want to add is located
    * click on the icon to remove it
  • Longitude:

 I never let my schooling interfere with my education 


            Mark Twain once said, “I never let my schooling interfere with my education”.  I never fully understood the meaning of that quote before coming here.  Each day is long and full and I am introduced to so much, but very little of it is in the classroom.

            Today I was at the riverbank at 6am to train for La Ruta Maya. This 170-mile canoe race takes place over a 4-day period from San Ignacio to Belize City.  Its long days, lots of miles and exhausting. The first time I heard of it I knew that I wanted to do it.  Galen University normally has a few teams they provide canoes and a support team for.  I am hoping to prove myself worthy to be on one of these teams.  Practice started yesterday, leaving us 1 month to train for this endurance challenge.  I asked the other students when we should have started training and they said, November.  So, we’ve got work to do.

            Six students arrived this morning, so we split into two boats, a girls boat and a boys boat.  The other two girls were experienced and showed me the proper way to paddle and directed us up the river.  The boys struggled to get started and flipped several times before leaving our put in, which boosted our boats self-esteem.  But, once the boys got started they did very well and were faster than us.  Being on the river during the sunrise was very peaceful, the current was slow and the scenery made me feel as if we were deep in the jungle (though we were only a few miles out of town).  To train we paddled upstream. We did flip once we got to the first ripple that resembled a rapid, but so did the boys.  We will practice 4 times a week and I am really looking forward to it.  Plus it is a great workout for arms and core.  So good, that I need to add Icy-Hot to the grocery list (right next to the second round of sunscreen and bug spray).

            When we finished paddling I went to breakfast with a girl named Davina.  She took me to her favorite fast-food place down town called Mincho’s.  Here I got to try several Belizean classics that I had not tasted yet.  I had my first order of garnachas, which are fried tortillas with beans and lettuce .  I ate it with Tamarind juice and finished off with a salbuches, which are small fried corn tortillas with shredded chicken and pico de gallo.

            After breakfast Catherine and I went to a nearby village called Cristo Rey.  We met a woman named Ms. Winsome who runs a non-profit in the village called the Winsome Foundation.  The purpose of the foundation is to introduce the children of the village to the arts.  Ms. Winsome is an artist of African decent that moved from Canada, and wants to see the children of this small, impoverished village reach their greatest potential.  Her passion is contagious and I look forward to working with her on Thursday’s as a part of my ProWorld project.  Right now there is a lot of focus on the “Festival of Lights”, which will be an art festival in the village in March.  It is an annual celebration where the kids can show their art pieces and try to sell their creations.  The festival is growing and the proceeds are used for scholarships for the local kids.  At the school in Cristo Rey I will be teaching short lessons in creative writing, and also helping prepare for the festival.   

            Back at school we had our second Christian club meeting on the plastic tables behind the library.  Jon, Christina (the missionary couple I met), and their kids came and lead worship. Then Jon gave a message on Isaiah 52.  It was a really good time and we had about 10 students attend. 

            Then the afternoon was of course a little soccer, and then hopefully a passing grade on an economics test.  So, it was a good, full day and I am leaning so much, but very little of that is from sitting in a desk listening to a lecture.

Other events of the week: 

A surprise birthday party for Pablo: We decorated with balloons in the house, and when Pablo arrived home Emir told him to come inside and see the balloons.  The element of surprise was slightly spoiled, but it was still fun.

A drum performance: Josh, a guy I met at school, has traveled the world with his Garifuna drumming (African influence).  He invited me to come listen to him play.  They are really good, and I hope to go to another performance this weekend.

Saw my first toucan: I don’t know how it took so long, but I saw a pair by the river today.  They are the national bird and supposedly very common.

Cribbage: I found a group of older guys that play cribbage at their fish shop downtown.  We played three games and I learned that they are from Scotland, England, and the US.  Defiantly will be returning for root beer and cards, it reminds of the crew outside of Cowell’s.

Spanish: I rode the bus to school with Kenny one day and we spoke in only Spanish the whole time.  I did pretty good, except when I told him about the time I got dollars (dólares) in my stomach from eating to many cherries and told him I paid one pain (dolor) for the bus ride.  The similarity of those two words has always been my pronunciation pitfall in Spanish. 

Report inappropriate journal entry

Shout-out Post a Shout-out

Loading Loading please wait...

Be the first to post on CTurner's travel page! If you are a member, log in to leave a shoutout.