Life in the jungle: It rained all morning. My allergies were at their worst and my cough was bad. It took some Jack ass bitters that I had picked last week. Last week Verna Mae showed me a jackass bitters plant. I harvested some leaves to dry out. The leaves seemed sufficiently dried out that I could make tea from them. That did a pretty good job of clearing up the allergies but not the cough.
I spent the morning drawing and laying out a main chicken coop and some hen houses like I had just built yesterday. I needed to figure out an inventory of lumber needed. I built this last coop and my fire hearth tables out of off-cuts of lumber but this rough lumber is really wearing out my skill saw.
I basically took most of the rest of the day off in my hammock to give myself sort of a Sabbath. My allergies and this cough have been tough on my energy and motivation levels. Later in the afternoon, I went up to Verna Mae’s for eggs. Until I start producing my own eggs, I won’t be getting any more from the village grocery store. The other day I got my second batch of bad eggs. No more. I also needed to talk to Saul about my lumber needs and help with putting a roof on my fire hearth building. I ran into Derrick and asked about helping me build my greenhouse. After months of waiting, he is still too busy because he continues to give other jobs a priority. [I had a few sentences of venting but later decided to delete them.] Saul says he has a guy he wants me to meet who would be willing to help me instead.
I stayed up late organizing and consolidating the hundreds of brainstorming notes I had on my phone to my computer. A cooler day. The night was very loud with frogs calling.
My cashew seedlings are coming along nicely
Life in the jungle: Only a few hours after I went to sleep, I woke up with a wicked cough that kept me up all night. I attempted to sleep in my hammock for a more comfortable position but I was awake for hours. I must have finally fallen asleep early in the morning and woke up at 11 AM.
I did a little work on my fire hearth and I painted the bottom of 4 corner posts I plan to use for my main chicken coop. I need to paint the bottom of the posts before they go into the ground. I am running out of blue paint again. In the afternoon I worked on a grid layout map of my coconut field. I need to plant those fruit trees I got from the agriculture fair. In particular, I need to keep track of all my different types of citrus trees and where they are planted. I also consolidated some seed bags that failed to germinate and planted 49 more soursop seeds from a fruit I purchased the other week. The last hour before dark I chopped at the river lot. No rain, but a super breezy and windy day today.
Life in the jungle: Once again I woke up in the night coughing and got next to no sleep last night. When I got up and about, I finished the layout map of my coconut field. I put a second coat of paint on my main chicken coop posts. I then cut my grass and spent some time chopping at the river lot.
An Alope sphinx caterpillar. The moth photo is random off the internet.
Life in the jungle: Last night I slept in my hammock instead of my bed. I did wake up coughing in the night but because of my raised body position, my allergies were not nearly as aggravated so I didn’t lose tons of sleep. I started my morning digging my holes for the corner posts to my main chicken coop. That was until I snapped one of the post-hole digger handles. In the village arranging for new handles. I was informed that based on the moon phases I had today and tomorrow to plant my fruit trees. I thought I had a few more days. So, I raced home and started planting my fruit trees in my coconut field right up till dark.
Life in the jungle: About an hour before I went to bed last night, I started coughing. I coughed for many hours before I eventually fell asleep.
This morning I headed to the city. I was supposed to pick up my corporation papers and approval letter for my work permit. I messaged the lawyer that I needed to be on the 12:30 PM bus back as I needed to finish planting my fruit trees today. He said that he would be in the city by 11:30 AM and he would message me. I never heard from him.
I got all the rest of my fruit trees planted just before dark. This evening I also received a phone call from someone who is going to help me build my greenhouse. On and off rain all day and all evening. The road is an absolute mess.
By chance I spotted this Mexican Masked tree frog on the road
Life in the jungle: My cough wasn’t so bad last night but right as I was about to fall asleep my allergies hit bad. My throat went raw. I couldn’t heat up water for my Jackass bitters as the power had gone out. It rained all night and all morning. After lunch, I headed to the grocery store. On the way home it started raining again. Arriving home, I planted 40 soursop seeds that needed planting. I was able to plant them thanks to the planting bags I picked up yesterday in the city.
The first passion fruit plant popped out. I also forgot to document that about a week ago I noticed my first custard apple germinating. And I am starting to see a few more germinate now.
My road. What a mess.
Life in the jungle: A slow morning as other than my city trip I haven’t been setting my alarm until this cough goes away. While I was putting a quick coat of paint on my next chicken coop legs, I got hit pretty hard with an allergy attack. My allergies have got so bad and I get hit with them with no notice that I am forced to refer to them as an attack. My best course of action was a nap in my hammock. Later in the afternoon I went to the ponds and did some chopping. I planted 20 lemon seeds in bags and I placed some star fruit seeds in wet paper towels to test a new way of germinating seeds that I recently came across. It rained in the afternoon and all evening. Orange Walk is reporting 2ft of flooding.
Stauffers tree frog
Life in the jungle: I am still sleeping in my hammock and I think I got a reasonable amount of sleep last night. At this point, I wonder if I will bother trying to sleep in my bed anymore. I am not sure if and how much rain fell in the night but by breakfast it was raining and would not stop raining all day. Sometimes raining quite hard with thunder. There is a Tropical Wave approaching Belize after an area of low pressure crossed the country over the weekend.
I now have 30 blog posts to publish when I get a source of internet. Which I haven’t had since taking my trip and posting blog posts at Caye Caulker back in mid-February. I spent the evening until late organizing computer files, particularly my files on tree farming. The frogs and toads are super loud tonight from all the rain.
Glossary of Terms
Glossary of words or people that may or may not be part of this blog post. This glossary will be at the bottom of every blog post for Belize.
Jack & Jill – These are my ex-property managers (names changed). They are Canadian, they introduced me to Belize in 1997, sold me their house in Belize in 2003, and rebuilt my house from 2014 to 2018. I have known them for over 30 years. After almost 20 years of me supporting their life here in Belize Jack decided quite unexpectedly to declare “war” on me right before Christmas 2021. They would end up stealing my business license and causing me a lot of grief. They live on the farm, but not on my land.
Wayne – He is the son of the original owners of the farm (both owners are deceased). The original farm was 2 – 30 acre pieces minus 2 – ¾ acre parcels for my house and 2 – ¾ acre parcels that Jack & Jill own which were all originally purchased from the original owners. In 2017 Wayne sold me 40 acres of land from the original 60 acres (30 acres plus 10 acres). Wayne lives in his parent house and has a few cows on his remaining 17 acres of land.
The ponds – I have 2 large (300ft long x 50ft wide x 10ft deep) ponds on my 30 acre parcel of land which is basically jungle. I have about 60 coconut trees (mostly mature) around the ponds. I have plans to plant a few hundred papaya trees here plus other fruit bearing trees around the ponds.
The coconut field – I have about 400 coconut trees planted (various growth states) on about 3 acres of cleared land of the 10 acre parcel. I plan to add various fruit trees to the same field as soon as I can.
The river lot – my house sits on a ¾ acre lot. I have a second joining ¾ acre lot that allows me river frontage on the Belize River
The dry – Belize has 2 main seasons. The rainy season and the dry (no rain). The wet is obviously the rainy season.
Chopping – using my machete to clear brush and unwanted trees