Wednesday, July 29, 2020

7-29-2020 Yes, More of Cara's Cooking and an Update on Belize

One beautiful Sunday we drove down to Mango's Beachfront Bar so Eric could have their Sunday
special of a $6 burger.

We ran into several friends who had arrived by boat - smart and fun!

It's not unusual to see a horse in the village, but on this day we saw four! Three adult horses and a
foal, all hanging out at the playground in front of the school.

I, Cara, attended a virtual Yelp event via Zoom and learned how to make a sugar body scrub from
simple household ingredients. Easy to make and nice - even Eric likes and uses it.

Black bean burgers - my first attempt, and they were pretty good. The recipe made a decent amount,
so I froze some for later. They were easy and tasty, so I will make these again.

Tostadas - Homemade corn tortillas topped with caramelized corn and black beans, pepperjack cheese
and fresh, homemade guacamole. Yippee, it's avocado season!!!  While I normally make guacamole
with avocados, a friend introduced me to the way they eat avocados in Guam, and it's eye-and taste
bud-opening! Halve the avocado and remove the pit. Fill the center of the avocado (where the pit was)
with a mixture of soy sauce and black pepper. Spoon out bites of avocado, making sure to get some
sauce with it and eat. Wow, is it good!

Zucchini fritters - these are yummy, and I make them fairly regularly.

My second attempt at gluten free banana bread. The first one turned out gooey, but this one, while
slightly overcooked, turned out the right texture. Yay, I'm improving! And I had several leftover
overripe bananas, so I mashed them and froze them to make another loaf at a later time.

I processed my first breadfruit (messy) and made it two ways: pan fried (on top) and spicy baked
breadfruit fries (on bottom). Eric is not a fan of breadfruit, but I like it. Both ways were good.
I don't know if I would make it again, though, since it would just be for me, and it was fairly labor
intensive. It's worth it to get it when we go out and someone else makes it.

Hash browns

A new friend, Dwayne, recently moved to Hopkins from Corozal (in the north of Belize). This is
his dog, Blue, who was huge but super sweet. Sadly, he recently passed from tick fever.

Every new repatriation flight brings in at least a couple new people infected with the virus.
Plus, illegal border jumpers who visit Mexico or Guatemala then return to Belize keep
bringing in the virus as well. So, we are now up to 48 total cases (only 19 active, as most
recover, thankfully).  

The State of Emergency ended at the end of June, though we still have to wear masks in public and social distance.  Now every businesses can open if they want to. Many have not, though, because there are no tourists here to sustain them. People in the country are traveling around some, but it's not enough. 

The land borders will remain closed for a good while since Mexico and Guatemala have a ton of coronavirus cases. However, for several reasons, the government decided to open the international airport on August 15th.  (The wisdom of this is a matter of great debate in the country right now.)  In any case, tourists that do come have several requirements.  They must provide proof of a negative Covid-19 test from within 72 hours of travel, or they must submit to a rapid test at the airport (at their own expense).  They must also download an app to their phone that tracks their movement and allows the government to check in with them on any symptoms.  Plus, they are only allowed to stay at approved "gold star" all-inclusive resorts that have their own restaurants and tour operations.  These tourists are not supposed to leave the resorts and wander around the villages, but we'll see how many actually adhere to the rules. 

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