We are always about finding new adventure and explorations here in Belize. Yesterday was no exception. We decided to go visit the Mennonite village of Roseville, right near Red bank. They are most noted for the Scarlet Macaws that nest high above the village. We saw many flying, but unfortunately were not able to see them close enough to take good pictures, so a stock photo will have to do!
There is a river that crosses the gravel horse and buggy path that leads into Roseville. Once we left the highway, it wasn’t long that we realized the road was made to fit the horse and buggies that traveled there every day. Very narrow and lots of lush vegetation closed in, in spots. We passed people on bikes, and walking. Everyone was friendly, waving back, as we pulled over to be able to pass.
The further we trekked back toward the village, the more beautiful it became. You could see the mountains in the distance, a harvested corn field in one direction, a vibrant cabbage patch in the other. All of the farms had bountiful fruits or vegetables. We stopped at several to buy some of their goods. One farm had carrots the size of a child’s baseball bat, and cabbage heads the size of a basketball. The next farm was loaded down with watermelons, bell peppers, and onions, the size of softballs.
After buying enough fruits and vegetables to feed a small army, including 5- 20 pound watermelons, we headed toward the swimming hole. This was a well hidden spot, the local Mennonites and Mayans came to cool off in. We crossed a rock laden river with our vehicles, in places maybe 3 feet deep. The water was lightly rushing around the tires, enough to create that revered soothing water sound, that some fall asleep to. I on the other hand was enjoying the sheer accomplishment of traversing a rocky river bed, though it was tame by comparison, oh the possibilities!
We parked on the edge of the dirt path along side a large garden plot, being tended by three Mennonites, in their traditional clothing of long denim jeans, straw hats, and long sleeve shirts. We walked along the beaten down path, across massive boulders and finally popped out at the edge of the river.
We set up chairs, ate a picnic lunch and then dove into the refreshingly crisp, but not cold waters. On one side was a home made slide, boards lined with vinyl, the other side cradled the rope swing made of several lengths of different materials. The main length being a thin metal wire attached to a strap, and finally to a large tree leaning over the waters edge.
This is when the fun began! We all took turns sliding down the slide, jumping off the rope swing, and lounging in the moderate water flow of the river. Climbing up the skinny tree that was the jump platform for the swing proved to be a little challenging as you needed good balance with out any hand holds. It was comical to watch as each person shinnied up the tree and tried their hand. Some took longer than others. I wont mention names, but it seems there were two in particular that were battling out to see who could eat up the most footage on the camera!
Swinging out over the water and dropping in was exhilarating, even though it wasn’t a massive height. The watermelons we had just bought came in handy offering rejuvenation for the energy exerted from playing in the water. A good time was had by all. If you come, water shoes are recommended, but not necessary. The large boulders in the river are covered in moss. You just couldn’t ask for a more relaxing afternoon, especially once we put the chairs in the edge of the water and sat down for a visit. Finally fresh banana bread was devoured, and then it was time to get back on the road and cross back over the river. We even were graced by the presence of two Scarlett Macaws, flying from tree to tree, screeching their lungs out to announce that they were there. My kinda day!
I tried my hand at putting together a little overview video of the day.