Granny is an eternal optimist and when I asked her for a top 10 list she literally sent me a recap of the entire trip in chronological order. There were 21 points, one for each day of their trip. After much deliberation, here are Granny’s top 10 highlights of backpacking in Central America.
1. Alyssa’s suggestion that we return to Akumal because I did not see the sea turtles on the first visit. The great joy I felt in being close to these beautiful, peaceful creatures. Special alone time with you, Asher feeding the birds and playing with a cat while your Dad & Mom went for a swim with the sea turtles.
2. Travelling to Tikal National Park and slowly taking in this world wonder. Being strong enough to walk up the 182 stairs to Temple IV and viewing Tikal from this lofty look-out.
3. Walking the quiet streets of El Remate and not being aware of what each corner would bring. Being greeted by friendly people. Walking with chickens, dogs and pigs roaming freely and viewing the spectacular colour of the flowers. Being welcomed into the home of a wood carver, a net maker and our neighbour Delphinia to make homemade corn tortillas.
4. The cobblestone streets and coloured buildings of Flores, Guatemala.
5. Our snorkelling extravaganza on our boat cruise to Isla Mujures (Island of Women).
6. Going back to the time of pirate invasions in the stone fort in Bacalar, Fuerte de San Felipe.
7. Travelling days spent going across Belize and into Mexico and all the wonders we saw along the way.
8. The relaxing foot treatment I received in Playa Del Carmen by tiny minnows massaging my feet.
9. A quiet meditation spent in the parish church of San Joaquin in Bacalar.
10. Enjoying travelling times with Rick, Jim, Alyssa & Asher.
When reading Grumpy’s list you can see a few themes emerge – travel time and food. Though Grump loved his creature comforts like AC and toilets with seats on them, he showed his true grit on the road.
1. Swimming with the sea turtles at Akumal, Mexico.
2. Only taking 3 days to arrive in Central America.
3. The taco stand in Playa Del Carmen.
4. The boat trip to Isla Mujeres.
5. The sights of Bacalar and the Ruins of Tikal.
6. All the friendly and happy people of Guatemala.
7. A/C and ceiling fans.
8. Backpacking through Central America with Asher and the kids.
9. Eating and enjoying the local foods as we travelled.
10. Enjoying the excellent weather.
11. Arriving home in 1 day— with our luggage.