“Golden Years” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.

Up just before 04.00 hours yesterday morning to find when I got out on the veranda with my coffee (black) and iPad that it had rained during the night/ early morning (couldn’t tell you which because the sound of rain has no chance of waking me from my sleep).

Straight to The Times on-line to read the various articles covering England’s victory the previous day over Poland. I know that I watched the game but …

I then set about producing yesterday’s edition of the blog and finished pulling it together and publishing it around 06.00 hours when I showered, shaved and dressed. I had to get out early so that I could meet Victor (the welder) to give him the money for the materials he needs to buy for the hatch covers for the septic tank that he is going to make for us before he caught the 07.30 hours Belize Water Taxi to Belize City. I did this with time to spare – met him at 06.45 hours – and then headed off to Estel’s for (in my opinion) a well deserved breakfast. And, while I was there, started to write today’s edition.

With breakfast finished I went to Atlantic International Bank‘s branch in Pescador Drive to make a withdrawal (yes another one) and then went to the San Pedro Town Council‘s offices to enquire about the requirements for the occupancy of our new home.

In the “San Pedro Town Council Local Building Authority Policies” leaflet that it issues it advises that an Occupancy Permit is required. Not wishing to be in breach of any rules or regulations I wanted to apply for such a permit. I got a very quick (and helpful) response when I was informed that they are not issuing them currently because they do not have a Building Inspector. The position is currently vacant.

Whilst in the offices I also asked about the Clean Up Campaign that commenced on 7 October for one week that was subsequently extended by a further week. In a effort to clean up the lots and streets of San Pedro the ‘Council is operating a free clean up service and I thought that this would be ideal for the three adjacent lots that we have in Fire Coral Street in San Pablo.

Richard, the young man at the Reception Desk, was extremely courteous and told me that if there was rubbish there he would personally go to carry out an inspection and determine what would be required to remove it and he gave me his telephone number to contact him.

It’s some considerable time since I have been to Fire Coral Street so I had no real idea if rubbish was still an issue. So, only one thing to do and that was drive there. But I still had loads of things to do. And then I had a brainwave. Contact Laurie (aka Tacogirl) who lives very close to our lots and ask her if she would take a look for me. She readily agreed and within minutes had sent me photographs. Photographs that quite clearly show that our lots are not the rubbish tip that I feared that they would be.


Car parts near the brush and trees that we had cleared.



I didn’t get around to ‘phoning Richard back but will do today because once the car parts and rubbish bags are removed we will burn the brush, etc and have a fence erected. Thanks Tacogirl for your help.

I got back to the condo we are renting during our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize shortly after 09.00 hours and then , with Rose, set about packing our stuff.

We went at it with real determination and, working as a team, systematically filled up the suitcases. All six of them. We then filled the carry-on bags (three) and then started to fill up the boxes. We still have some remaining items to pack but there’s little doubt that we have ‘broken the back’ of it.

Pleased with our efforts we had a light snack for lunch, freshened up and drove to our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize and got there around 15.15 hours.

Starting off in the Ground Floor self-contained apartment we saw that Angel had been at work with the paintbrush and roller in the kitchen/living room.



Gleaming white walls.

In the kitchen area Moses had finished fitting the cabinet handles.


And in the en-suite for the larger of the two bedrooms the first toilet seat had been fitted.


Up to the First Floor where we saw that Alfredo had finished varnishing the staircase.




A few feet away from us Moses had started applying the finishing coat for the kitchen wall cabinets.



Having finished varnishing the stairs Alfredo had turned his attention to cleaning up and was busily sweeping the western (lagoon side) veranda.


With the stairs varnished we were able to go up to the Second Floor and I was pleased that we could because I was able to see that Moses had started work on fitting out my walk -in closet.


There’s still quite a lot to do before we move in to the Ground Floor self-contained apartment on Saturday but we know that we are temptingly close to being able to spend our golden years in our new home in Ambergris Caye, Belize.

The headline for today’s edition is based on the single released in 1975 by David Bowie which reached number eight in the UK Singles Chart and number ten in the US Billboard Hot 100.


  1. ColoradoRobbie says:

    Hi John, Steve and I will be on Ambergris Nov 2 – 9, 2013 to figure out if it’s where we want to spend our ‘golden years’. It would be fun to meet you and Rose for Breakfast at Esters to hear how things are going with your house! Robbie

    1. Hi Robbie

      If the day is right Rose and I would love to meet Steve and you . Sometime next week (not Tuesday obviously) would be good.

      Just send me an email with what time/ day best suits you and we will see if we can work something out.

      Kind regards



  2. Harry the Hornet says:

    If you don’t get the job do you get your deposit back?

    1. No. I told them to send it to you. You’re full of it so…

  3. lifeagain says:

    John, there is a job for building inspector……..your qualifications maybe just what they are looking for…

    1. Harry the Hornet says:

      Don’t think you’re yet qualified for the Building Inspector’s job, however just wondering how you got on with you application for the Septic Tank Collector position?

      1. Given the confidence you have in me I have submitted my application to be San Pedro’s first Septic Tank Collector!

      2. Just got a response from the Town Council re my application for the position of Septic Tank Collector. Apparently they want me to make a deposit!

    2. Work. No need to swear Don!!!

  4. lifeagain says:

    Wow, the stairs look good. John it looks like Saturday will be an exciting move in date for all of us. Now where is that case of Belikin that Rose won. Today would be a good time to put it on ice or the first thing that goes into that brand new fridge.

    1. Hi Don. We are really pleased with the stairs.
      As to the case of Belikin that Rose won, we are going to use it along with another one that we shall buy to say thanks to the guys when they finish the build. So probably they will get opened around 4pm on Saturday 26 October!

  5. Julian Foster says:

    Two days and a wake-up!!! Waaahooooo!

  6. Andy says:

    The Stairs are great ! The rest of the house is very good but the stairs show the wood off…..

    1. We like the stairs too Andy. A strong feature in the living area.

  7. footballbat says:

    Laurie is great. I found her blog about 6 months before we made our trip to Ambergris Caye in 2011. She was really helpful answering questions and we got some of her handy coupons too, which saved us some money during the trip. Unfortunately as things played out we never got a chance to meet her – but hopefully we’ll get back in the next year or so. Love the stairs John!

    1. Laurie is always very helpful and a great source of information and suggestions.

      As to the stairs, thanks. We like them too.

  8. Jane says:

    You are so deserving, John and Rose. You’ve both worked so hard with your “team” to accomplish your dream. Saturday will be a red letter day!

    1. Don’t know about deserving but thank you Jane. It’s been a great experience but we are glad that it is nearly over.

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