This post is a feel-good freestyle post with a splash of news sponsored by long time friends and readers Mary and Bill Yarborough.
Back in Action
I was so excited to be getting an almost new washer and dryer that I broke my friend Lara’s junk food rule don’t eat chips right from the bag. Her tip is to use small bowls for snack food to avoid pulling a Homer Simpson. Of course, having had a long romance with snacking, I think that share size can easily include me, myself and I 😀
Some of you may have read in my Bad things happen in Three’s post about my washing machine, slowly losing wind. I had never bonded well with my stackable washer and dryer, and the thought of having to shop for a washing machine during limited shopping hours in a pandemic did not thrill me. The fact that I might end up having to buy the same machine I did not care for again was equally as unappealing. I was grateful Mike read it, as he and his wife Joyce saved the day and my sanity by offering me a washer-dryer combo.
Better Than Ever
It was a divine single girl version of a happy ending that did not come from tinder 😀
I had been working with a skilled washing machine repairman, David Sosa to try and get it working again. He was so close but just could not get it going full cycle. I was ready to let go and trust something better was coming before he even made that declaration.
After testing three varied loads of laundry, I am pleased to report my new machine rocks in so many ways.
- It has an agitator inside.
- Sheets and clothes come out of the wash better spun.
- The dryer does a quicker job because things are not going in as damp.
Great Help Made It Easier
I would consider both Mary and Bill as helpful people. On their last trip, while Bill was on Sabbatical over on Caye Caulker, Mary helped my cause for Cancer through participating in a charity scavenger hunt. That same trip, Bill and many friends had a fabulous time deepening their bond with Belize and with each other as we celebrated his 50th trip around the sun.
They will both be glad to know I found help to make my life a small bit easier as my personal snow globe keeps being shaken almost daily.
I know we are supposed to be social distancing but sometimes it is just unavoidable. (The picture below was taken before the mask rule.) I was very pleased with this bunch of guys, they all made my life easy.
First off on the left is David Sosa mentioned above, he is my favorite Ambergris Caye washing machine repair guy. He does other repair stuff, too, and solar power installations. He’s available on WhatsApp +501 624-2874
He was also the proud new owner of my stackable for parts. Some of which I was hoping would fix friends’ same model washer that was having different trouble. It turns out her lock just needed recalibrating.
Here is what my friend Diana had to say about David’s services – I hired local appliance specialist David Sosa to troubleshoot my broken washer. He diagnosed and repaired within an hour. So I had him take a look at my freezer’s broken ice maker. Also fixed. And he checked the pressure on my water pump. Fair prices, fast and efficient service.
My cost of repair from David was $25, and that was for a small non-washing-machine related job, changing out rusty bolts (I did have the $10 replacements already purchased.)
As for the other guys in the picture, they deserve a shout out too, and everyone got a soda: Andy’s truck service and his capped crew. David had decided Andy was our easy option for a moving guy, and I am glad he did. Not only does he live on my street, but Andy was also fast, professional, and easy to work with. $60 BZD was his price for picking up the washer at Banyan Bay Suites, delivering it to town, and moving the old parts machine to David’s place, a few mins south. Andy is also available on WhatsApp +501 629-7808
Since this is a story about washing I will include some handwashing stations around town so you can get a sense of what it looks like. I had previously shown you the Lourdes Hardware one. Below are Castillos, Greenhouse, and El Dorado (around the corner from Lino’s). They also had a good one at Save-On Grocery. They also have inside the door blocked so you cannot go in till they see you wash.
I had to add the picture below not only to show you the big signs around town but the irony of it all as the two people doubling on the motorcycle and many more are definitely not personal distancing. Although my editor Shirlee thought she read if from the same family doubling is allowed.
It All Comes Out In The Wash
Another laundry related saying and very applicable to our news right now. Since Bill is a politico and both he and Mary have a long time vested interest in Ambergris Caye and Belize, I decided a bit of news was in order. They understand how wild west politics can get here.
The public is getting all sudsed up on a few issues. First off, a new shipment of malathion was delayed. The skeeter situation is crazy right now and has people very hot and bothered. On the local news, it was suggested we crop dust the island. However, concerns were brought up on the environmental dangers of doing so.
Another big issue that has people lathered is, after already being told no, San Pedro Belize Express Water Taxi was suddenly given a green light to proceed with their plans. The plans are to build a Belize City Style Water taxi dock and operate from Ruby’s Hotel on Front Street. This would be a huge hazard to both RC school kids and severely affect local businesses. The “Dog House” had a very informative show about it the other day and one of the outcomes was that Peter Lawrence and Elito Arceo were to meet and converse with a lawyer to find out if there was a legal way to protest this right now and have it stopped.
As for our COVID-19 News, Belize is one of 12 countries that currently have zero active cases (and currently, only one person under investigation). Borders are currently closed, with a projection of early July as a possible opening date. What happens after that largely depends on what our neighbors are doing and our ability to rapidly screen travelers or have some sort of immunity pass from their country of origin.
Other good COVID related news, everyone is happy we can now get wet and enjoy a good meal, swimming and restaurants are now back in the mix. Open-air establishments are able to take reservations and have tables of 10 with a six-feet distance between them. One small step towards normalcy. I cannot wait until masks are worn by choice again.
Complimentary Belize Vacation
If you know me well, you know I cannot leave with politics. So I am going to take Bill, Mary, and all of you on a mini Banyan Bay Suites Vacay. Thanks go to Lee, Almira, and Maria for all helping me co-ordinate a few pictures. Lee took the inside condo shots, and Maria took the outside image below and feature at the top, all the rest are mine. Last but not least, thanks to Andrew Ashcroft, who is involved in Banyan Bay and the Alaia Foundation, for helping catch our fall during COVID-19.
Now onto the good stuff, your virtual vacation ….
Right this way, to your spacious condo Mr. and Mrs. Yarborough. Some of your friends have already checked in.
Imagine a chilled out Sunday morning with breakfast and a pool view.
After breakfast the schedule gets hectic and it’s time for a chilled out 1/2 day snorkeling adventure with friends.
Nothing like stopping for a quick a dip in the pool on your way back to your suites to change.
Did someone say Sunset Cocktails? The beach bar and lounge area are perfect for a nice relaxing before-dinner drink. Insert yourself and your friends here.
Or maybe you would rather enjoy your before-dinner drink relaxing in one of the overwater hammocks at the end of the dock.
What could be better than finishing your day with a peaceful meal over the water, including good friends and some tasty wood-fired pizza?
Suite Owners Story
I asked Mike to give a bit of his story and how it came to be that he and his wife were able to step in and sponsor my laundry option angels during a very difficult time.
My wife Joyce and I live in California near our three children (two daughters, a son), and three grandchildren. I did quite a bit of research with the help of International Living magazine. Looking for a vacation condo outside the United States, we decided on Ambergris Caye for its proximity to Florida (we have a second home on Sanibel Island, Florida) and for its English speaking. I visited San Pedro with a friend about six years ago and, with the help of a real estate agent, bought a unit in Banyan Bay because of its proximity to downtown and beautiful landscaping. Of course, the Island has changed significantly since then, and as you know, they are expanding our resort with multiple buildings next door. I did a lot improving in my unit, but now Marriott wants to modify all the rental units to their standards. The air conditioning that is in the attic is being moved inside the closet that I have the washer and dryer now. I need to stop writing and sorry for writing like an engineer. I came to the US after high school from Iran to attend college, and English is my second language. I started learning Spanish recently, which could come handy when we visit Belize. – Mike