Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Adventures of "Indi-Annie Jones"

Since my last post was in... um, October may have wondered if I'd fallen off the face of the earth-- but actually, I only got as far as Central America. My adventure in January to Belize and Guatemala was amazing, exciting, challenging, and filled with all the greens and blues and turquoise of the Caribbean sea,  the ivory of sandy beaches and stone temples, the gold of fried plantains and the red of sunburn and mosquito bites!

 I discovered a few years ago that despite thinking all my life I was afraid of heights...I'm not! But I do have a bad case of FOMO (fear of missing out)... thus I HAD to climb every temple...just in case I missed another spectacular view!
From the jungles to the ocean...and a tiny, pristine island called Laughing Bird Caye...
...where I faced my fear of wading into the ocean, swimming in the ocean, putting my face into the ocean, getting stung/bitten/eaten by something in the ocean, drowning for no good reason in the ocean... get the idea? Anyway... I took a big breath, strapped on the mask and fins and DID IT! It was awesome.
 This is one proud adventuress. FYI, that pale skin? Lobster by the end of the day.

All that hiking/climbing/swimming meant I needed fuel... and what could satisfy more than fresh live termites...
...seriously, they taste like carrots. 
For the more traditional meal, there was a bowl of hot, delicious Cow Foot Soup.

One of my favorite  experiences... canoeing into the silent, black, sacred recesses of what the ancient Mayan called "The Place of Fear and Darkness".
Barton Creek Cave. Spectacular and often a bit tight to navigate. I tried my best not to overturn our three man canoe as I played NatGeo photographer in the bow!
That skull is many hundreds of years old, embedded in the limestone of the cavern wall. 
Possibly the remains of a human sacrifice.
Moment of silence and awe now, for all things ancient and mysterious.

And then, of course, the thing I'm least afraid of...critters! They're what I live for when exploring.
 Curious coatimundi.
 Basking crocodile.
Noisy  howler monkeys!
The elusive harpy eagle (this one in a rescue facility...isn't he gorgeous!)
 There was a rescued jaguar there, too. We didn't see one in the wild, but saw a ton of cat footprints along the muddy trails in the Jaguar Sanctuary.
My favorite new bird...a "nightjar"...can you see her roosting on the branch? She will fly out at night, making a "poor will, poor will" sound, and eat moths. Yum.
A tapir. Ugly and proud of it. We were warned not to get too close to the tapirs... they pee on you when they get excited. Nice.
Everyone's favorite tropical bird!

I could go on and on...but  you should go adventuring yourself, and see the ancient ruins, taste the termites, and smell the tapirs! My own journey was amazing, beautiful, surprising, educational and unforgettable. Yours will be, too.


  1. Wow! Such a cool journey! So jealous... ;-)

    1. Steph-- Can't wait to hear about you own trip someday soon...Egypt awaits!

  2. Omigosh, indie-Annie Jones! Your adventure looks truly AMAZING especially your canoeing trip! I still can't believe you ate termites. I think I'll stick to carrots. LOL! And I can't help but imagine that somewhere out there, there is a poor cow hobbling around on three feet 'cause you ate the other one. LOL! Thanks for sharing these awesome pics! Sooo cool! P.S. Did you really climb down those steep steps of that pyramid? I'd be the one asking for directions to the elevator/escalators.

    1. Maria--LOL! You crack me up. I never thought about the poor cow. But there are a lot of coconut shells here that would make a good prosthetic! ;) Thanks for stopping by, mi amiga!

  3. I can't top Maria! Now I'm laughing outloud on top of being completely awed by the photos and the journey. Way to go, Annie!
    I think the ancient skull in limestone in the place of fear and darkness needs you to write it a story. ASAP.

    1. The skull IS awesome, isn't it? There was also the purest of water dripping from the ceiling of the sacred cave...collected and used in Mayan rituals long ago. Inspiring much?

  4. interesting blog. It would be great if you can provide more details about it. Thanks you