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  • Angela Morrison

My first trip to Belize!

We just got back Belize. I finally got to go to the country where the inspiration for Michael in Taken by Storm came from. Twenty years ago, a hurricane hit a small live-aboard dive boat in Belize and rained on Allen and I when we were diving in Cozumel. I couldn't stop thinking about the tragedy, and my broken, grieving Michael was born.

Hurricane season is not a big problem in Belize. It's short and doesn't shut down travel like in the Caymans. Or cause regular devastation like Texas, Louisiana and Florida.

What is a terrible problem in Belize and all over the Caribbean is Sargassum Season. Sargassum is sea grass that breaks off a giant mass growing off the coast of Brazil, floats North, and attacks beaches. It's merciless.

We booked a week of diving at a resort on an atoll so we'd be close to the best diving. Belize Dive Haven has a beautiful white sand beach all along the front of the resort. At least that's what the pictures online showed. Unfortunately, they don't clean the sargassum off that beautiful beach. It's a huge and would take a front end loader carting it off every day or so. So we were met with a putrid, rotting mass that smelled like an open sewer. We had no idea spring was Sargassum Season.

The diving was some of the best we've ever done--but we had to leave early and go to a hotel far away from the coast--near Mayan ruins. And I came down with a terrible sinus infection. Luckily, you don't need a prescription for amoxicillin in Belize, so my hubby made a run to the pharmacy and saved the day.

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