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Wednesday, 12 March 2014

The Last Snow Storm

    At least I hope it's the last of the year, and it has been a corker. So far 12 cms. has accumulated and the wind is so strong that drifts are developing. We are back into the minus temperatures with a strong wind chill.The poor sparrows are almost being blown off the bird feeders!

We climbed to the top of this temple.

From the top looking across the plaza.

Wednesday, Feb. 26

   Our last stop in Belize was Belize City (not the capital as it is prone to flooding) and we came in by tender followed by a long, bumpy ride to Alton Ha. This site is a bit different from the others as it was ruled by priests and had many temples and burial mounds. It was also a commercial centre with two large plazas.

   After lunch and a nap another boat took us to a tiny atoll called Goff's Cay where we spent a couple of hours snorkelling. I was a bit apprehensive about trying it so opted for starting off on the beach - never did get out of my depth! But I got the hang of using the snorkel and was quite pleased with myself. The water a clear blue-green and I did see a few small fish. I will be more adventurous next time. Unfortunately, I didn't bring my camera so had to get a photo from the CD.
 

Goff's Cay
 
 
Thursday, Feb. 27
 
   Sailed overnight to Costa Maya, Mexico for our longest excursion yet -  2 1/2 hours by bus on bumpy roads, but it was well worth it. Kohunlich is quite an unusual site with huge carved masks set into the side of the temple. It was built around 400 AD and abandoned around 900AD. t was also the largest site we had visited so far. Its name refers to the nut palm "Kohun" used to thatch houses to this day.
   On the return ride we stopped at a cenote (sinkhole, formed when limestone is dissolved by an underground stream and the roof collapses in). We ate at a restaurant and had a quick dip in the pool. We had ceviche of shrimp and octopus, followed by fried and battered fish and other seafood, the first local food we have been offered and quite delicious. Dinner also included ceviche. There was a brief rain shower on the ride back to the ship but we were all snoozing anyway! Two interesting slide shows before dinner given by the "bird guy" and the "fish guy" - so many beautiful examples of local fauna.
 
This mask was about 4 feet tall.

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