You know how sometimes we (collectively, not the imperial) wonder out loud in conversation, or amongst ourselves, just how big a group Gringos are down here in Belize? I have anyway, a time or two.
A couple of days ago, I took it upon myself to try to actually quantify that figure. Here's what I found out.
Roughly (and all these figures are 'roughly' - some more roughly than others), there's about three-thousand (3,000) U.S. Expats living in Belize. I was too lazy to find numbers for Canadians, much less all the other countries that have representation here in Belize. You'll just have to interpret as best you can. Like I said, the figures are 'roughly'. By the way, the three-thousand figure was compiled in July 1999 by the Bureau of Consular Affairs. Not very current, but the it was the best I could find with limited resources, time, and money.
The Bureau of Consular Affairs is an organ of the U.S. State Department. Folks who have dealt with the State Department at the U.S. Embassy over in Belmopan will note that I didn't even have to make an appointment to get those figures (probably why they're not so current).
A bit more current is the February 2014 population estimate for the U.S., at 317,456,363. That I found on the U.S. Census Bureau's website.
Now, this is where the real magic comes in. I couldn't remember exactly, or even approximately, how to figure percentages. So, I queried Google for a 'percentage calculator' of which there are just oodles to choose from. Some tripped off the line when I plugged in my numbers because it turned out I was working with a result significantly less than one. They wanted to round off to the nearest whole number, I guess, which from the result, probably would have been zero. That was what they proposed I should use as a number. Not acceptable. I kept plugging away till I found one that was able to to go nineteen decimal places. That's close enough for government work, I think.
Here's the final number I came up with: 0.0009450117715863834. How much less than one percent is that number? A lot. In fact, a Hell of a lot less. Like I said, closer to zero than one.
Now you know, roughly, how large a percentage of the U.S. population is living here in Belize. We might become excited because of all the new arrivals during tourist season down here, but, it's all relative.
Our population here is still a drop in the bucket (that's a technical term) compared to the overall population of the U.S. I bet if you added in the Canadian percentage and even threw in all the other country percentages as well, it would still be a drop in the bucket.
Now that we've cleared that up, we can move on to the next item on the agenda. That is, what're the odds of correctly guessing whether the Belikin bottle in your coozie still has a swallow or two left in it or is it empty? Bet you can't tell...