Every November, in preparation for the coming season, Cully and crew haul boat loads of materials and equipment out to the island for the annual build-a-thon. This is when they perform annual maintenance, repair storm damage to buildings, and expand on or add to the ever-growing menagerie of structures that comprise the Adventure Island eco resort.

This year’s renovations included a major overhaul and expansion of the kitchen palapa. Below are the before and after pictures:

Before:

After:

Cully is in Belize City and just sent me some pictures of the construction he has been supervising out on the island. We have had a huge crew out there in preparation for the upcoming season. Every year we do a big building project, sometimes it’s cabanas, this year it is a complete re-do of our island wash stand.

Our facility is an eco-resort. We use only solar and wind power and we flush nothing into the sea. No cabana has private restrooms, everyone must walk to the restroom and shower from their cabana. Our island wash-stand has RUNNING RAIN WATER, which is super cool. We used to have 4 sinks, now we will have many more. Cully tells me there will be 7 sinks and 2 laundry sinks, with more protection when we have bad weather.

Click on the pictures below to see the full images. The first one is “before”, the last 2 are “during”. It will take a few weeks to get some “after” shots.

When you run an eco-resort in Belize you really learn to appreciate the value of a wonderful guest. What qualities do wonderful guests possess, you might ask? Well, to start with, they have to have a great sense of humor. This is key! You must keep us laughing to keep us happy, don’t you know. And you want to keep us happy, because we are in charge of keeping you happy! What a great system.

And, wonderful guests are flexible. They don’t mind not having a private restroom, and they are game for any crazy idea Victor, Charlie, Matt, Mark, or Joelle might come up with to keep everyone entertained when it’s blowing 25 mph and is a *freezing* 65 degrees out (yes, even Paradise can have bad weather sometimes).

Wonderful guests are also easily entertained! Get them to search for a fast hermit crab by headlamp, then give them some duck tape and a marker to name their crab with, and run a race, and they are EXTREMELY happy for at least 30 minutes!

Hermit crab race.

Another great thing about “my” guests (yes I do feel somewhat possessive) is that they stay in touch! It’s fabulous to hear from everyone on and off over the years. Yesterday I heard from Dick Head of Windsor, CA (he is fond of running up to people he is just meeting and saying “Hi! I’m DickHead!). He and his wife Jan joined us on 4 trips between 1992 and 1999. Even though I didn’t speak to him (it was an email), I can say for certain that he hasn’t changed A BIT.

And then there are the two New Yorkers who joined us a couple of years ago… Vladimir Brezina and Johna Johnson are NYC sea kayakers. I’ve heard their stories, and their lives sound FANTASTIC, but now I can get more of the scoop on paddling around, ALL the way around, Manhattan. They have a new blog about kayaking New York City! Check it out!