The crazy things I’ve heard in Belize

Some of the “crazy” things I have heard since coming to Belize.

They seemed crazy at first, or sometimes they seemed logical at first, but upon investigation were either true, half-true, or downright wrong.  And some are just cultural differences that struck me as funny, or strange.

Man doing dishes“It’s shameful for a man to do …..”

“It’s shameful for a man to do the laundry.”

“It’s shameful for a man to do dishes.”

To which I responded, “There is no shame in working hard for your family, no matter what it is.”

My wife got the opposite side of the coin.  “Your husband helps with the dishes?” “He is a good husband. My ….”

This is actually a very common attitude world-wide.

I don’t agree with it, but, I would in the States give my life for you to have freedom to your opinions.  Why should anywhere else be different.

we might not agree, but each person has the right to their own opinions.

Mennonite Family - They are not Drug Smugglers
This Mennonite family does not smuggle drugs.

Crime

“I heard there is a lot of crime there.”

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I heard this from people when I said I was from Michigan, or Texas.  I said what a coincidence I heard the same thing about Belize.  Apparently Detroit, and Houston are the entire state, like the bad parts of Belize City, are the entire country of Belize.

I also heard this about every neighborhood from people living in other neighborhoods.  So check things out yourself, at a few different times of day, and days of the week.  And ask people living in the neighborhood.

“I don’t steal, and my kids don’t steal.”

Great. If only the rest of the country can get on the band wagon.  Theft is pretty common, and  it is important to keep an eye on your things.

“The Mennonites are the worst drug dealers”

Multiple people have said this. I for one never would have thought that.  I have no way of checking this, and really I don’t want to.

“Keep your dogs inside when the circus is in town, they will pick them up to feed their show animals.”

ASPCA anyone?  Not in Belize.  But, do take good care of your animals if you have them, and keep them safe, and contained.

There are a number of organizations in Belize for the care and protection of animals and most Belizeans I know treat and care for their animals well.  There are a lot of “strays” though so as they say on price is right “Spay or neuter your pet”.

Police BadgeThe Police

 “The police will round-up the entire household and take them to jail if they are called to your house, even the kids.”

This accompanied a warning to not do any drugs, make sure you know what people are smoking if they smoke at your house, and to keep it down if you drink.

All great advice and stuff we did, already.  I also advise to be a good neighbor because if a neighbor calls the cops on you, it isn’t like in the States, you probably will go to jail.

“The police can tear your house apart looking for illegal drugs and even if they don’t find anything, they don’t have to pay for damages.”

The police do have a great deal of power here and very little oversight.  Don’t do bad stuff, or let anyone on your property do bad stuff.

“The police often will go to the bars and round-up everyone that is drunk and put them in jail for the 3-4 days or until someone can bail them out.”

I haven’t seen this happen but, I can see it could.  Again be good, behave in public, and keep your head down.

“The police are the worst criminals in town.”

Not true, but according to some people, close.  There is corruption within the police force, but they are trying to deal with it and there are just as many good cops, as bad.

I have many friends on the police force in the States and I have heard about the corruption there.  I was told by a cop friend many years ago, “The only reason you’re not in jail, is, no cop want’s you there.  If a cop want’s you in jail, you will be, and you will be convicted.”

Here in Belize there is less oversight, and more reason for them to be willing to pick up money “on the side”.   Mostly it is writing traffic tickets to be paid, to them instead of at the police station.  Or the we found “…..” in your car, for $….., we can make it go away.    They are known to wait outside bars for people coming out tipsy to pull over.  A local expat said that in the 4 years they have lived here they had 2-3 fake tickets, and one “got to go to the ATM for enough money” drama.

Sounds like more of a hassle than any real danger. One more reason to not have a car, no fake tickets, no pull overs for “drunk driving”, less hassle.  Just be good, and for the most part you won’t have to worry about anything.

 Our daughter giving herself a bathCrazy things from our daughter

“I don’t want bath!”

Five minutes later we found her on the back porch giving herself a bath.

Bad, ant!”

As our daughter points her finger at the ant on the floor.

“You, Crazy, Daddy!”

Anytime our daughter doesn’t understand  or agree with what I am saying.

“Lalita, What did you do? You broke it. Bad girl” 

From our daughters room about 10 minutes after we put her down for the night.  She had ripped a page of her book, and knew it was wrong.  She can’t get away with anything with herself around.

Sorry for my sense of humor

Some of these things that strike me as funny or strange due to my quirky sense of humor and my upbringing in a small town in rural Michigan.   I know that to many others these may not be funny, or strange at all.  I started this post as a funny post, but I see I worked in some pretty serious issues too.  I still tried to make the overall tone light.  If you have questions or comments let me at em, i mean leave them below.

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