Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! I hope you all had a lovely day and someone special to share it with…even if that person was just yourself. We had a pretty nice weekend. We were able to get a sitter in for our son, the same lovely girl as last time.

So we went out to dinner at Corker’s and checked out their specials. My hubby had cheese sticks and chicken fried steak, and I had all appetizers…bread and oils, baked brie and a chicken liver pate that was more like a delicate mousse. Very impressive considering our location.

After dinner we went to the Pig & Parrot for the Belmopan Humane Society fundraiser. We’d purchased the tickets earlier in the week and showed up fashionably late. The event started at 8pm, but we didn’t manage to get out of the house till then and were thinking of skipping dinner altogether. But we didn’t want to rush things. So we just took our time and showed up around 9:00.

We were only able to spend about an hour, which was too bad as we did get into some great conversations and would’ve enjoyed visiting more with some other members of the diplomatic community. But I’d promised to have our sitter home by 10pm. So we wrapped things up and headed back to the house.

We didn’t do much on Saturday. But Sunday was action packed. We started out at 9am with some friends and took our toddlers to the Belize Zoo. It was A’s first time at the zoo, and he seemed to enjoy it. I can’t think of any creature that he was particularly taken with, but he was afraid of the parrot and the otter, which I thought was really random. Maybe because they both moved so quickly.

I had a great experience with an ocelot. We’d done the Jaguar Encounter before where they let you pet the jaguar and scratch it from the other side of a fence. So when the gorgeous white ocelot came over to us and started rubbing up against the wire like a housecat, I just couldn’t resist.

I scratched its chin and pet the top of the paws that it extended through the fence. I was careful not to actually stick any part of my body onto its side where it could gnaw on it. So it was a pretty amazing experience, especially since this was not the creature that had been raised in captivity.

Your friendly neighborhood ocelot.

Your friendly neighborhood ocelot.

After the zoo, we stopped into a restaurant called Cheers…no relation to the one in the States. They just like to copy names down here. We’d passed it every time we’d driven anywhere on the Western Highway, but it never looked particularly inviting. Our friends had been there a few times and liked it. So we figured we’d check it out.

It was much more pleasant than I expected. And we had burgers, fries, nachos, chicken tamales, and grilled cheese sandwiches and milkshakes for the kids. There was even a little playground off to the side for them to play on. Although it’s important to note that the base of the slide was up on cinder blocks, so the steep angle of it made for a pretty quick trip to the bottom.

After that we tried to get A to nap, but he wasn’t having any of it. So he rested in his room for an hour or so, and then we went to the pool. This was the first time I’d been back in the pool since before Xmas as it had cooled down quite a bit over the holidays. But it was wonderful to be back in the water. And I’m hoping to start swimming again regularly for exercise. We’re even thinking of starting A on kids’ swimming lessons when they resume in March.

Today was the final day of our three-day weekend and an American holiday (Presidents’ Day). So I actually got to sleep in this morning while N got up with the baby. Then our nanny came in around 7:30am. We took A to playschool for a couple hours in the morning, then went to Pasquale’s for lunch after dropping him back home.

It was nice to be able to loiter and have a couple of beers…not something we do when we go there on your average Monday. The American owner even commented on it playfully when he realized it was a holiday and that the embassy was closed…and we weren’t actually boozing it up on our lunch break. 🙂

After lunch we stopped into a little coffee shop that we’d been meaning to check out. It’d been open for several months but looked a little shabby outside, as most things here do. But we’d had a few good referrals, including one from the clerk at the Chinese grocery next store. So we wandered in for dessert and a coffee. And we were not disappointed!!

They had a fantastic menu full of sandwiches and random Chinese foods and cakes and designer coffees. It was like being at Starbucks…sort of. They even had free WiFi. I’d been trying to find a new lunch destination, which is always a challenge in a small town. So now I’m looking forward to going back again for a meal. And it turned out to be a very pleasant and productive Valentine’s weekend.