You know those barely planned trips where everything falls into place just right? This was one of those. It went a little like this: wow there’s a great deal on airfare to Great Exuma, where’s Great Exuma? The Bahamas. This small beach house is available for rent, who wants to go? You? You? Pack your bags. Done.
The very name is exotic, Belize. The kind of place where you walk onto the baking hot runway after landing and you’re glad you wore a knitted silk tie for the journey. We all have our vices yeah? Let your freak flag fly.
It used to be called British Honduras and became independent in 1981, keeping English as its official language. Sandwiched between Guatemala and Mexico, it has a population of about 350 000 and quite a bit to offer, jungles, Mayan ruins, beaches, diving, as well as an interesting drinkskultur.
This trip had been in the works for about nine months. People opted out, other people opted in, the vendor changed a bunch of things, it was starting to feel a bit like a potential clusterfuck. The resort turned out ok, as usual the D&C crew proved fantastic, and we met some cool divers (hello Derek, Bob and Tiff).
Saint-Martin, Sint-Maarten or SXM was a last minute destination. One of those cases where your body can no longer take the stress you’ve been putting it through and cracks start to show in the armour, or in this case the immune system. I’m not talking about myself obviously but of my dive buddy. So asked if I would organize a quick dash to the islands I obliged.
I don’t think I’m a very knowledgeable or experienced diver, and so it is a very sobering thought to realize how little I knew in the first years of my underwater adventures. As a member of the D&C group often says Fortune favours the foolish, and I think he means me. He’s not wrong. Though, unlike other areas of my life, I have never been careless or rash in scuba diving, there were times I just did not know any better. Today I still have tons to learn, but one thing I did pick-up, is that no one is more in charge of my safety than myself.