Monday, August 13, 2012

Goodbye Belize

It’s been a busy last few days. On Friday, I went to see Diego one last time with Si and Laura. He is so adorable! I could definitely take him home with me. He’s so cute and pounces on everything and everyone. It must have been a good day to be in a playing mood because Spartacus and Kofie wanted to play after every feed. I stayed in the enclosure for 45 minutes after most feeds. After my persistent badgering, Si made pancakes on Saturday morning. They were a cross between American pancakes and English pancakes and quite tasty. A manatee researcher and a group of her students came for a tour in the afternoon and some of the school kids came as well to see Twiggy. It was my last time feeding Twiggy and I got to demonstrate for all the visitors. The kids loved seeing a manatee up so close. It’s great to back up the knowledge they learn about the manatees with a personal encounter. The SACD boys invited us to dinner on Saturday. They had caught a bunch of fish and cooked them for us and made a cake for another volunteer’s birthday. All the food was amazing! It was probably my best meal in Belize. We hung out by the ocean drinking for a few hours before we moved onto the bar. When we got back to Wildtracks, we stayed up talking and drinking until almost five in the morning, so I was pretty tired at the 6:30 am monkey feed. After a quick nap, Jazmine and I went to Fireburn with Neto and Rudy. Fireburn is about an hour boat ride away and the water was pretty choppy so we got soaked on the way. On the hike in, we stopped on the small village to pick up some water and talk with the local family. They gave us some plantains to bring back to Wildtracks with us. The hike to the howler monkey release site was still muddy from the hurricane and it was a challenge not to slip and fall. Jazmine and I were sliding all over the place but eventually it was Rudy that ended up falling. He was the only one who stayed dry on the boat ride, so we felt it was a fair trade. Wildtracks built a pretty large tree house with three rooms that we stopped at to have lunch. Then we headed to the release site to feed the monkeys. They provide the monkeys with some occasional fruit to check up on the troop and allow them to begin tracking their movements again. The whole troop showed up and it was great to see the rehabilitated monkeys actually back in the wild behaving like wild monkeys. We headed back to Wildtracks and found Duke in the medium pool. He had lost twelve pounds in one week so we’re keeping him under observation to see if he still has intestinal parasites that the dewormer didn’t kill. It was Paul’s birthday so we had two cakes to celebrate and a delicious dinner. Belize has been amazing. It took awhile to adjust since I came alone, but I eventually fell in love with the country and I hope to come back one day. The people are amazing and I can’t believe the incredible relationships I have built with all of the animals. 

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