James Hood (2019) shares the events from Sunday, June 10th in Belize with Global Public Service Academy.
Our first full day in Belize was a good one. Greeted by a plethora of sounds from roosters to cars to dogs barking, we awoke to a delicious breakfast and cool temperatures. We soon departed for the Mayan ruin of Xunantunich located near the border between Belize and Guatemala. Thanks to the extensive knowledge and wisdom of James, our tour guide and bus driver who is also a respected figure in the community, we totally immersed ourselves in the awe-inspiring and beautiful ruins. We saw the ancient Mayan ball courts, bedrooms of nobles, and the sites of human sacrifice and other aspects of the ruins. After experiencing Xunantunich, we returned to the Belizean festivities celebrating their Mayan heritage on a holiday fortunately coinciding with our visit. We watched the conclusion of an arduous 20-mile bike race, and intense Mayan ball game, and a greased pig chase while a few of us chowed down on local dishes in nearby tents. In preparation of the work ahead of us, we then refined our skills needed for tomorrow’s home visits to measure health indicators such as BMI, blood pressure, and blood glucose levels. We concluded the day by eating a tasty meal generously provided by our host mother, Ms. Selma, and went to bed early in anticipation of tomorrow.