Colourful Dancers and Playful Monkeys

Carribean 2010

I guess by now you realize that I love to travel.  One of my goals is to see as much of the world as possible. My husband, Paul, and I just returned from a wonderful cruise to the Western Caribbean.   The ship left from Miami, Florida and our ports of call took us to  places we had never been to before; Cozumel, Belize, Grand Cayman and Isla Roatan, Honduras.  We enjoyed every stop but our favourite was Isla Roatan.

Colourful Garifuna Dancers greeted us as we got off the ship. The men wore long loose brightly coloured dresses and their faces were covered with masks. We learned from our tour guide that many years ago the African female slaves were often given their freedom.

There was no chance for the African men to gain freedom so the women dressed them in women’s clothes, covered their faces and snuck them out into the hills and caves of the islands.  They eventually intermarried with the local natives and created a new culture.  They do the special costumed dance to commemorate their freedom and their unique history.

The tour bus took us to Gumbalimba Park.  There we found a virtual Garden of Eden with well kept grounds, beautiful foliage and vibrant flowers.  We walked past gentle waterfalls and over a scary swinging rope bridge.  We were given the choice of taking the “Chicken Walk” or the bridge, but as no one wanted to be known as a “chicken” we all opted for the daunting bridge.  I managed it just fine by holding on tightly and not looking down into the lagoon below us!

Carribean 2010

It was well worth it as on the other side we were greeted by the most vivid coloured birds I have ever seen.  Splashes of brilliant reds, blues and yellows could be seen in the trees above us.  A large bright green parrot alighted on my shoulder while my husband quickly took a picture.  He soon had his turn as another landed on his shoulder looking very comfortable.  Now if only he had been wearing his pirate costume.

Carribean 2010 Carribbean

Further on we met some mischievous white faced monkeys who were only too ready to play with us.  They jumped on our heads, looked through our pockets for goodies and provided us with displays of their acrobatic ability. One even took a pair of glasses off a visitor’s face, tried them on, decided it was not the correct prescription and returned them to the astonished tourist.  They were most entertaining and so cute I wanted to take one home with me.

Carribean 2010 Carribbean

The park was situated near a beach so we spent the rest of the morning relaxing on the beautiful white powder sand and paddling in the clear, turquoise, warm water with bright tropical fish swimming between our legs; and thinking about the cold weather everyone was experiencing back home in Canada.

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19 комментариев на «Colourful Dancers and Playful Monkeys»

  1. Evgeny Or говорит:

    Sheila, thanks for the good story 🙂 But may you show us more pictures next time? I mean photos of hotel, ship, beautiful landscapes, local shops (goods and foods) and more… Thank you and good luck with opening the World!

  2. Aizhan говорит:

    Evgeny, author is Darlene.

  3. Darlene говорит:

    Hi Evgeny:
    I will be happy to include more pictures next time. Glad you liked the story.
    Darlene

  4. Ira говорит:

    Hi, Darlene!
    Thank you for your colourful story. My children and I enjoied reading about your trip to the exotic park so much. Especially, it’s nice to learn about such places in the middle of the long cold winter. I live in Ukraine. Here, the weather is very similar to Canadian one and we were glad to escape for awhile to a sunny and warm world of your story. Thank you for sharing with us your impressions and memories about this trip.The pictures are great !!!Especially the picture of your husband with a parrot on his shoulder.
    We look forward to reading new stories from you .

  5. Evgeny Or говорит:

    Darlene, I’m sorry for my mistake with your name 🙂 Thanks for answer 🙂

  6. Darlene говорит:

    Hi Ira:

    I am glad you and your children enjoyed the story. How old are your children? Yes, it is nice to think about warmer places at this time of the year. Will you be watching the winter Olympics on television? I live near Vancouver and there will be many scenes from the area. It is an exciting time here right now.

  7. Stas Sidorov говорит:

    Hi, Darlene! It’s a very cool story! Beautiful photos! Especially with a parrots. Thank you!

  8. Lily_Tz говорит:

    Hi, Darlene, colorful pictures and journey! Your husband with the parrot looks like a real pirate:)) It was my first thought after the picture. He should try a role in the movie:))

  9. Ira говорит:

    Hi,Darlene!
    Thank you for your attention to us.
    My children are 9 and 6 years old. They love reading books and watching TV programs about other countries, exotic places and tropics. Also, they try to learn about Canada as much as possible. Honestly, I didn’t expect them to be so serious about our immigration. 🙂 They watch CBC news with me and follow all the events that take place in Canada. My youngest son and husband don’t speak English very well yet. My doughter and I usually translate for them everything that we could understand 🙂 That is why, we definitely won’t miss the winter Olimpics. Hope, we will have the possibility to watch it on our local channels.
    Dear Darlene, could you please sometimes tell us what is going on there in Vancouver and at your place during the Olimpics? Of course, if you have time for this. It would be great to learn about the true atmosphere and spirit of the Olimpics through your stories! And ple-e-e-ase, could you take some pictures for us!!!
    We are very grateful to you for the time and afforts you spent on sharing with us great moments of your travelling and we will appreciate your Olimpics»reports»very much

  10. Darlene говорит:

    That is so wonderful that your children are so interested in Canada. When will you be immigrating? I will be sure to write something about the Olympics for you and your family.

  11. Ira говорит:

    We look forward to reading about the Olimpics! Thank you very much!

    Hopefully, we are arriving at the end of this summer. We will be the happiest people on the Earth. We already love Canada!

  12. Regina_BC говорит:

    Girls, maybe we have already been asked about that and I just missed it.. but what you are? What are you doing for living that you can travel such a long time?

    I know professors who do that during their sabbatical, I know students, who volunteer in different world programs missing one or two semesters at shcoll , I know young people who earned and save some money and then, between jobs, travel for some time, but I know that , in general, working adult people in Canada have just 2-3 weeks of vacation, and sometimes a week during the Christmas, but that’s all what they have for traveling.

    So I have a very practical question for you — how come that you have a helluva lot of time and, I guess, of money as well, to travel so often? 🙂

  13. Regina_BC говорит:

    To change my mistakes:

    1. Girls, Darlene and Sheila, maybe YOU have already been asked about that and I just missed the answer..

    2. ….who volunteer in different world programs missing one or two semesters at SCHOOL

  14. Darlene говорит:

    Hi Regina!

    To answer your questions. I am an Employment Counsellor and teach young people how to look for work and how to keep a job. I have been with my company for long enough that I get 4 weeks of holidays. I have never taken more than 2 weeks at a time for holidays. The cruise I just returned from was 7 days. I also am an ESL teacher and tutor young children in the evenings and weekends. That is my holiday money. I am also very careful with my money so that I can take a couple of nice holidays a year. For instance, instead of eating out in restuarants, I always make nice home cooked meals at home (except for my birthday and our anniversary) We save our «going out to dinner» money so we can have some nice meals on our holidays. I also look for excellent deals on airfare, hotels, cruises etc. They are out there! You don’t have to be rich to travel but you can become very rich (in knowledge and spirit) by travelling. Hope that answers your questions

  15. LadyRemark говорит:

    Its really wonderful story, travelling over the all world is also my great dream! Sincere Im good for you! And we wait for new stories about your joney. marina and Alex.

  16. Regina_BC говорит:

    Thank you for the answer.

    Now I see that you are a lucky one :), who has 4 weeks of holidays. It seems you have been working 10 years in the same company already, a rare thing in modern Canada. 🙁

    It’s good that you told us how you save money for the trips. Thank you for that.

    I do the same! 🙂 Always remember about Double Latte Factor. 🙂

    How do you think , maybe. it is a good idea to talk here about «saving money» in Canada? Should we ask Victoria to start such a topic? 😉

  17. BZB говорит:

    ReginaBC, it’s a god idea for a topic on saving money. But I think that also Darlene or Sheila could start this one, why not?

    Darlene, how long are normal annual vacations for, say, office workers? I sort of worry that if and when I’ll be lucky to fid a job in Canada, probably I’d have problems finding time to go to Russia in order to exchange my internal passport that is about to expire in a few years… ((

  18. Darlene говорит:

    All companies have to give their employees two weeks paid vacation by law but many companies start off with three weeks paid vacation. If you have to take a longer holiday you can always take time off without pay as well. This can often be negotiated with your employer. I hope that answers your question.

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