Going Slow In Belize

Essays / Friday, May 18th, 2018
The sun sets on Caye Caulker, Belize.

The enjoyment of life is in the details. I love the way the sea changes color here as the day progresses, almost as if it had moods of it’s own. Somber gray-blue in the morning, to brilliant emerald green at midday, to warm sapphire blue in the evening. I love walking slowly down the sandy streets and seeing large purple crabs beginning their day as the sun sets, only to rush back down their burrows as we walk by. I love watching the little anoles darting here and there, doing pushups to claim a fallen branch.

Of all the snorkeling we’ve done here, seeing vibrant reefs, sharks, manatees and sea turtles, the times I like best are slowly getting lost in the little microcosms in the shallow water around the island. Pairs of purple angelfish guarding over their pile of discarded conch shells. Tiny feather dusters and baby fish taking refuge among the forests of sea grass and mangrove roots as the sinister looking barracuda lurk just above.

Lost in these moments, you realize that the human scale is but one of countless others happening all around us. Usually invisible, but no less vibrant and dynamic than our own. Little dramas playing out on stages we rarely notice. How much richer our lives would be if only we paid a little closer attention.