The conclusion of a New World adventure

Well that’s it… the adventure is over … for a while.  I have finally arrived in England.  I am in an internet cafe in London, and I have a bit of time before the money runs out so I thought that I would share the last part of my American travels with you crazy kids…

From Belize I jumped a flight to Miami where I stayed the night.  Miami was an excellent choice, it offered all the creature comforts that the modern day retiree could want. It is like the Gold Coast only super sized, same as everything else in America. Everybody who lives there was born in New York, has spent about three decades too long in the sun and spend their days riding the bus looking for unsuspecting victims to tell how much better their life had been when they lived in New York.

The plan was to catch up with a friend who lived in the “small town” of Stuart (about 3 hours north of Miami and with a population of 130 000) before following my teen idols – Jason, Kylie and the entire 80’s cast of Neighbours – in seeking fame and fortune in the motherland. I caught the Greyhound up to West Palm Beach where I missed my connection to Stuart. I was planning on getting a hotel when K-Dog, a guy that I meet on the bus offered for me to crash on the floor of his mates house. The cheapest hotel I could find was about US$40 so it would have been rude of me if I didn’t. K-Dog had just got out of prison but seemed like a solid citizen who had fallen in with the wrong crowd. He showed me some of the poetry that he had written in prison, it wasn’t bad.

The next day I ventured up to the thriving metropolis of Stuart, where I spent a couple of days with Chris and Mike. Chris works at a mariner hobnobbing it with the rich and famous golf playing retirees of Southern Florida while her boyfriend Mike is a fire-fighter. I got to see the station that he worked at but was very disappointed to learn that there was no fire-pole.

Fire fighting in Stuart is no where near as good a deal as what they get in South Gippsland, there is no beer or bbq’s and you have to turn up on days other than Sunday. Lighting forest fires is even frowned upon. Although Chris and Mike’s eating habits were a little “alternative” they were really fantastic people and I had a banger of a time. I think that the best bit of my stay there was when Mike told me a ripper story that he had heard about a left-handed serial rapist named K-Dog.

So that’s it. The New World adventure had come to an end and it was time to head to England, the home of countless bad TV soaps, mushy peas and flat beer served at room temperature (which is not too bad).

Breaking of the fellowship

I think that you last joined us in the Lonely Planet’s Honduran darling, the city of Tela. Despite the allure of the Tela’s monkey-less lagoons and anaemic nightlight, Jozza and I decided head back to Tikal in Guatemala (word on the street was that there was some kick-arse ruins there). The trip took about 13 hours and had it all, about six changes of buses, corrupt boarder officials and a very uncomfortable ride in the back of a pick-up with two fat Guatemalan women who stalked Joel for the whole day (I think they liked the look of the cankles that he has been vigorously developing since hanging up the boots).

From Tikal we visited the Mayan ruins that are about an hour drive away. Fucking awesome, is the best way to describe them. It was here that we finally saw a monkey, no thanks to the Lonely Planet. A couple of days later in an internet cafe over a few beers, we listened to Roy and HG call the Roys (or the three Fitzroy players that remain from the so called “merger”) home in the Grand Final. It was also here that Joel and I went our separate ways. I was headed for Belize and he was going to bible camp in Mexico.

The fellowship was broken and while Joel tried to be strong, as the bus drove away I looked back to see him crying like a kid who had knackered himself on the frame of his BMX for the first time. Although this gesture was moving I was glad to be rid of him as I had not had a decent nights sleep for two months because of his serial snoring.

I arrived in Belize City later that day and stayed the night. It is not the most pleasant of cities, the whole city stinks because the sewage runs straight into the canals. Also, the masses there seemed to make a much bigger effort to take advantage of me than in the other cities that I had visited.

The next morning I caught a boat out to Caye Caulker were I did a couple of days diving. It was awesome, the worlds second largest reef and some of the best diving that I have ever done. Thousands of fish, sharks, rays and crayfish. Once again I wish I had a spear gun but Joel’s little incident with the Utilia scuba hippies was still fresh in my mind.