A Saturday in Belize City, Check it out! Print E-mail
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Wednesday, 12 April 2017 00:00

On Saturday last we at this newspaper took the opportunity of our being in Belize City, to move around in an effort to try and get a feel of what the Saturday vibez felt like. We arrived in the city, onboard a bus coming from the river valley area, we boarded that bus in the Ladyville area. Our time of arrival was just around 6:15a.m. As the bus stopped at the Save U area ,the first thing we noticed was, that all the TAXI CABS were getting jobs, from persons alighting the buses that stopped at that area, including the bus we were on. After a short stop the bus took a right hand turn and proceeded over the Belcan Bridge, then onto the Central American Boulevard. What caught our attention and that of many of the passengers onboard the bus, was that magnificent structure, off to our left at the foot of the Belcan Bridge. That structure is the Civic Center, that is presently under construction. We immediately started a conversation with a lady who was seated in the seat to our left. We asked her what she thought about the Civic Center. Her answer was “I can’t wait to see what it will look like when it’s finished, dis dah wan time deh Kyant seh govament d tief d money.” She told us that she remembers going to Basketball games at the former Civic Center. One such Basketball game she mentioned in particular was the Caricom Championship game in 1998 and how it brought cold seed over her body, when all the Belizeans at the game got up and sang our National Anthem. Another thing she remembered was going to concerts there. The Byron Lee concerts in particular were her favorite.

Moving along we noticed people moving along the street, while others were at the various tacos and other food stands buying their Saturday morning breakfast. Saturday was hot, but people were out in numbers. We got off the bus at the Pond Yard and got our tacos and juice from our favorite vendor. Then we walked towards the Taxi Shed, to have a sit down, in order to eat and exchange pleasantries with the cab drivers. They too were busy as jobs were coming their way. We spent about an hour there. During that time we had quite a few suspended conversations because the taxis were moving out as soon as they would return from a previous run. Our next stop was inside the market at Pond Yard. We met quite a few people we knew there as we walked around the compound. People were buying everything from fruits, vegetables, coconut oil and even clothes. While some appeared to have been out to get that Saturday morning feel. We walked along the stalls and made our way to the canal side exit of the compound and proceeded along the crowded canal side. The shouts of Corozal Tamales and Cayo Tamales were in the air, as these mostly ladies competed for customer. We went to the Michael Finnegan Market where we would purchase the stuff we needed. Moving around there was a bit tricky, because that market was overcrowded. After about an hour of moving around, shopping and chatting, we left with our bags in hand.

We boarded a City Bus near the Pond Yard Bridge and went downtown . Upon reaching downtown we alighted and went to relative’s house, where we left our bags after which we walked around the downtown area. Although it was not an end of month or the middle of a month, downtown was crowded. People were moving around, some were shopping, while others were just enjoying the Saturday. Some other folks were doing their banking- some through the  ATM, while others were physically inside the banks. Earlier in the morning, we actually saw people in lines at the Atlantic Bank on Cemetery Road even before it opened. There are naysayers who would want us to believe that there is no economic activity going on in Belize City on Saturday, but we know that is not the case. The Belize City area is a bustling BEEHIVE of ECONOMIC ACTIVITY on Saturdays. The ordinary John and Jane Public are involved in some sort of business and money is being generated. The truth is out there for everyone to see. Our visit was not just to the downtown because we took two other city buses as our mode of transportation and we saw the same amount of activity from onboard both the Lake Independence and Fabers Road buses. To see business extend all the way up Central American Boulevard, behind Yabra to all the way up Mahogany Street, was a sight to behold.

Around 2 pm after collecting our bags from our relative we made our way back to the Pound Yard area, where we bought some meat and fish. After completion of our business, we once again sat down and waited for our bus. After about half hour later, we were once again onboard a bus heading home, after a Saturday in Belize City. On our way home we saw the same type of activity along the Philip Goldson Highway and that did not change in Ladyville either. In Ladyville there are three large Supermarkets and they were crowded too. Another thing to note was that on Saturday asphalt was being laid to the carriageway of the Philip Goldson Highway. That itself was another scene of activity. So to all those NAYSAYERS who stay in their big houses and create those stories that nothing is happening economically, we say get out of your houses, ride the bus and take a visit to Belize City on a Saturday. Don’t take our word for Gospel, find out for yourselves. You may be pleasantly surprised at what you witness.

Finally as we usually do at this time, we take the opportunity to wish our readers at home and abroad plus the wider Belizean public a very peaceful but enjoyable Easter Weekend. We however need to sound our usual advice and cautions. If you will be away from your homes, secure them properly. Let a TRUSTED NEIGHBOR know that you won’t be at home. Turn off your gas before you leave home. If you will be driving a vehicle or using a boat, make sure you get that vehicle or boat checked out, before you travel .Observe safety precautions when around bodies of water. Don’t allow children to go off on their own. Take along , whatever medication you or any member of your party may be taking . Drive within the speed limit. Be civil towards others during this time. And finally we say DO NOT DRINK AND DRIVE OR SWIM. If we are all cautious and look after each other, we should all once again be able to read the Guardian next weekend. At the same time you are celebrating remember the reason for why there is a day called Easter.