Belize has been in a State of Emergency since April 1st. We haven’t had any new cases of Covid19 in over 45 days, our borders remain closed and you would think we’d be enjoying- nay, celebrating our unique position of being one of the few countries in the world to be “free.” But rather than going about business as usual in our own protected little bubble, we’re still under many restrictions. Mandatory masks, curfews, distancing and no group gatherings. You would have thought that with the swift and strict lock down of the country and subsequent “victory” against the virus, we would have been able to salvage the rest or our school year, local commerce, and festivals.
Approximately every 2 weeks after the initial 30-day lockdown, the GOB has announced “loosening restrictions” or changes in SOE policies. It outlines which businesses can and can not open or in what capacity and the guidelines the general population has to abide by. Each of these press conferences lead to a lot of confusion, questions, resentment. But for the larger part, everyone is following the rules (whatever they be that week).
My friends and family in the US have said about Belize, “man, you guys have really dodged the bullet how lucky.” But it’s a win that feels like a loss- the economic and educational repercussions have hit us just as hard as anywhere else in the world. I haven’t updated this blog much recently because, well, there’s not much worth updating on and I like to keep a positive tone to my posts but I’ve been feeling rather glum and uncertain about the immediate and short-term future.
A bright spot in the past few weeks has been our community BOGOs- Buy One Give One. We’ve done tins of butter and flats of toilet paper from Grace Kennedy as well as ground beef from Reinland Meats. This is 72 cans of butter and nearly 300 one-pound packages of ground beef that went for immediate distribution in Seine Bight Village.
This week I’m going to work on the next BOGO, work on shaking my dark-cloud-attitude, and work on tackling a virtual 100K running challenge with Splash Dive Running Club and runners from all over the country. I’ll keep you posted on the latest happening in Placencia- fingers crossed we’ll see more happenings soon!