Yesterday I met Glen, a native Belizean born on the mainland who moved to San Pedro sixteen years ago. He works as a bartender at Pedro's Inn. It seems Belizeans are hard workers; most work six days a week. I can't help but ask questions about schooling, family, and living situations when I meet new people. Part of me wonders how similar we are and I often find that there are quite a few things we have in common.
In contrast with Manuel, Glen enjoyed school as a boy. He grew up with five siblings and currently lives near two of his sisters on San Pedro. His mom is a frequent guest who stays with his sisters when she comes monthly. As he was telling the story, I thought about how often my parents come to visit me (quite often) and how long it's been since I went home for a visit. Of course, they live fairly close to me, but I only go home on average, once a year. Glen said he hasn't been to the mainland in four years. According to him, he came to the island for all the girls; however, he says they're all crazy. Not sure how he came to that conclusion, but we'll go with it. He also says the pay is higher on San Pedro in comparison to Belize City with many more activities to keep him busy.
He has one daughter, age 12, who attends RC school. He doesn't see her often and isn't with her mother anymore. I wonder is this part of the culture on San Pedro or are there a larger percentage of married couples and Glen is the minority?
I have to say, this island is filled with friendly people who like to share their life story. It makes being away from home this long, a little easier.