Now, I’m not saying that sitting at the end of a dock for an hour every day will cure everything that ails you.
Well, yes, maybe I am.
It certainly makes possible a beneficial attitude adjustment that will carry you through your day. Problems look so much smaller when you are gazing out at the sea. Life seems less in your control and more a microscopic part of the greater cosmos.
Gazing out from the end of a dock isn’t exactly like an astronaut gazing out into space. But I bet it is really close. Read the rest of this entry »
Take a cab home. I forgot to tell Caira to take a cab home.
Oh, god, I hope she knows enough not to try to walk home from downtown San Pedro in the middle of the night.
I’m on the couch. It is Thursday night — no, crap — it is after midnight, Friday morning already. Where could she be? Read the rest of this entry »
Look, I’m a zoo snob, OK?
I can’t help it. I’m from San Diego, home of one of the greatest zoos in the world — The San Diego Zoo and Safari Park. The zoo is so big it has outdoor escalators, overhead trams and regular bus service. On its webcams I have my choice of killing time at work watching pandas, elephants, orangutans, condors or polar bears.
I used to volunteer for one of the zoo’s biggest animal research fundraisers of the year. Couldn’t get enough of the place — starting with frequent visits when my kids were very young. Read the rest of this entry »
I think I’m becoming a birdwatcher. I’ll let you know for sure if I ever drop a bundle on high-end binoculars, a camera with a telephoto lens, a light-weight bush jacket with pockets for my bird guides, notebooks, pens, spare glasses, mosquito repellent and granola bars.
Then I’ll know for sure.
Meanwhile, I just spent a very productive morning with Mario, a guide at Pook’s Hill Lodge, spotting birds.
Man, did we see birds. Read the rest of this entry »
This list of questions was submitted to me by a website called http://www.expatfinder.com/ which is positioning itself as a go-to site for information on services and products that every would-be ex-pat needs to make the big move. The information is tailored to the specifics for scores of countries on topics like banking, health, shipping, real estate, education, and jobs.
They may or may not use these answers. Which is fine. Their idea of compensation is a promise to maybe promote the link to my blog. I didn’t have the heart to tell the woman that I don’t make a living from my blog and so promoting it means little. Nor did I tell her that if you want good writers, pay them good money. Doing stuff for free for money-making internet enterprises is so 2009.
But that’s OK. I enjoyed the challenge and coming up with honest answers was helpful for me too! Win-win. And if you like it, triple win!
– Bob Hawkins
Expatfinder Interview Questions
1) Where are you originally from?
California, nearly 30 years in San Diego and two in the Bay Area. Rose is a native San Franciscan.
- What made you move out of your home country?
The following is an expansion on a recent “postcard” that I wrote for International Living, one of the biggest players in the ex-pat game. Actually it combines part of my first version with the final version that was published by IL right here. A very astute editor pointed out that I was getting a little too inside for the casual reader.
You, my friends, are not casual readers — not if you have been slogging through my stuff for any length of time!
So you get to read more about our new road, which now goes right past our driveway. I’ll leave it at that. Thanks for reading … and writing!
— Bob Hawkins
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I sit on our deck and gaze out toward the Belize Barrier Reef, not 300 yards away, in the Caribbean Sea. The postcard-perfect, white sand and the green palm trees quickly give way to shimmering strips of blue and green—colors of the sea determined by a brilliant sun, azure sky, and sea grass and sand on the ocean floor.
There is one other color that catches my eye: the dry gray mud that spackles my legs and feet.
“Here I am, at 64 years old,” I think, “and every day I get to pedal my bicycle through mud puddles.”
I can’t begin to tell you how happy that makes me feel. Read the rest of this entry »
Recently I was approached to do a little writing about our life in Belize by some publications dedicated to turning ordinary developed country citizens into ex-pats. That is a pretty big business, you know.
I guess after living nine months on an island off the coast of Belize, I have gained some sort of credibility as an “expert ex-pat.” I don’t feel it, personally. To me, every day is still an enigma to be solved, a challenge to be embraced, a mystery to be exposed — albeit, joyfully.
If confusion is the first step toward enlightenment, I’ve barely put my first sandal into the sand. Read the rest of this entry »
The pain started somewhere low in my throat. My breathing became shallow as the pain slowly oozed like black molasses across my chest and down my left arm.
My first thought was: “OK, this isn’t in our Belize Playbook.” Read the rest of this entry »