Musings of An Old Man

by Brian K. Moore

Back From Belize

In 1979, when our motorhome was brand new, Glen and Katy and Phyllis and I took a trip to Mexico. Phyllis and I traveled in our new motorhome and Glen and Katy traveled in their self contained camper on their Ford pickup. It was a long trip. We put 6,700 miles on the new motorhome!

The most southerly point in our motorhome’s trip was Mexico’s border with Belize. Belize is a small country located below Mexico alongside of Guatemala. It fronts on the Atlantic Ocean. Belize used to be British Honduras and the Belize natives, although they look just like Mexicans, don’t speak Spanish. They speak English with a British accent!

Glen and Katy’s rig went a little farther than the motorhome did. It happened like this: After weeks of travel through Mexico, visiting places like Yucatan, Cancun, the old Inca and Aztec ruins, and on and on we had finally reached the end of Mexico! We were parked right at the Belize border. The only way left to go, it now appeared, would be toward home. Phyllis was ready, because although she loved the trips and traveling, she also liked to go home and she was ready to get these rigs rolling north. Phyllis was pretty strongly in this frame of mind when Glen suggested that we go to Belize, “just for the day.” Phyllis didn’t like the idea. She wanted north instead of south. She was kind of in a little snit and said, “I don’t want to go. You all go ahead. I’ll stay here in the motorhome.” So, that’s what we did. Glen and Katy and I went to Belize in Glen and Katy’s camper and Phyllis stayed in the motorhome. She later told us that the natives, unaccustomed to a house on wheels, were very curious and sometimes peeked in the windows.

Glen and Katy and I spent several hours in Belize. We drove around sightseeing and went in little stores. In one store Glen was talking to the proprietor, and he commented, “It is really strange to hear a Mexican speak with a British accent.” The lady’s immediate and indignant reply was, “I am not Mexican…I am Belize!!"

As it was getting close to dark, we headed back toward Mexico. Entering Belize had been easy. The officer at the border’s job seemed to be, just wave the cars through.

Going back into Mexico was a different story! There was a full fledged immigration station where they had the cars pull off and park and they had the occupants of the cars come inside of the station and show IDs. We parked and got out of the pickup. As we were walking in, I reached for my wallet to get my drivers license out, and to my surprise and consternation there was no wallet! I had worn different pants and the wallet had not been transferred! We were all concerned. I was two countries from home and had no identity. We concluded that the best thing for me to do was to hide in the truck and let Glen and Katy go in and be identified. The growing darkness facilitated my hiding.

I hid in the cab of the pickup way down on the floor, because the officer who had asked us to park had asked that the camper door be left unlocked so they could check inside. Pretty soon Glen came back. He had been traveling without a shirt and they had sent him back to put on a shirt. Finally Glen and Katy came out. They had been properly identified and we could go. I remained on the floor under Katy’s feet until we were completely across the border.

When we got back to the motorhome, Phyllis was over her snit and had cocktails and snacks ready for us.

The next day we headed north!