14 September, 2012

Battle of St. George's Caye Day Barbecue

First, I have to tell you, Hughesnet Fair Access Policy, in a word, sucks. Not only are you limited to 125 Megabytes upload as well as download, during any 24-hour period, but, during the day, when most users are online trying to do whatever, just getting a page to show up on your screen eats up the better part of 5 minutes or so.

Then you factor in all the software that wants to automatically update itself, you can see it's easy to exceed the threshold and be throttled by Hughes for the next 24-hours. Oh well. At least we have a connection, so I should be thankful - I guess. It's extremely frustrating in any case.

This Fair Access Policy (FAP) crap just started being enforced when we got new modems. Before, we could more or less do as we pleased. Not no mo! The Intertubes police are on the job, damn it!

To give you an idea. The megabyte limit is more or less equal to 25 still photos. Now, imagine watching a new video on YouTube... Bingo, half-way through a 2-minute video and you just stiffled yourself for the next 24-hours.

Enough bitching, eh? On with the show.

Last weekend we had a very nice get-together with our Godson, Isaiel and his wife Amarily, son Joshua and a little girl of their neighbor's,nicknamed O-B (never did find out her real name). Actually, it was on Monday, which is a holiday here in Belize. It was the Battle of St. George's Caye Day, which celebrates the defeat of the Spaniards in 1798 by the Baymen of Belize - considered to be the first stroke in the long fight for Belize's independence. A battle that actually took place over several days - from the 3rd to the 10th of September. The final battle that culminated an on-going series of battles between British forces, the Baymen and the Spaniards from 1716 to 1798.

Well, it was a nice little get-together. Isaiel had called a couple days before to see if we were going to be home then as they wanted to come see us.

They showed up about 10 AM. We went down to the palapa patio, enjoying the shade and slight breeze. We really had no plan of what we were going to do. We were talking about what we wanted to do and somehow the topic of tortillas came up. Amarily makes tortillas for her family every day and suggested she could teach Dianna how to do it. That sounded like fun.

This kind of suggested doing a barbecue. Well. Amarily also does a barbecue chicken stand a couple days a week in Guinea Grass, the village they live in, and she said she'd be willing to teach us her secret BBQ marinade/sauce recipe.

That sounded like a lot of fun. After a quick trip to the store, we commenced getting with the program.

First up, a mini class in the pool house kitchen with Amarily teaching totilla making and how to prepare chicken for the grill.
Amarily Conducting a BBQ Class
Then, it was hands-on to prepare the chicken, the marinade, and the tortillas.
Amarily Teaching Dianna All About Chicken BBQ
Here they're working on cooking up a stack of flour tortillas. Soft, fluffy and tasty.
Cooking Tortillas
Meanwhile, the kids weren't too interested in cookery, so the pool was beckoning. After a small snack of some lemon cookies, it was time to get wet.
Isaiel Entertaining OB and Joshua
By the way. Did I mention that it has been hot? Well, it has. When we came down to the pool house, this is what we found. We keep candles around all over for the odd power failure, just in case you need a light. This is the first one we've had totally collapse. Just thought you'd like to know.
Something's Wrong
One of the secrets to good barbecue is to keep stuff from sticking to the grill. Other than using Pam or some other non-stick spray (which we generally can't get down here anyway), what do you do? Well, the easy answer is to use half a lime and spread its juice all over the grill. You can also use a slice of onion and do the same thing. Here Isaiel is demonstrating just how to do it. Believe me, that grill is HOT.
Un-slicking Up the Grill Surface
Then, we get down to business. We did spread out the coals so that the grill wasn't quite so hot before we put the chicken on. Isaiel and I took turns keeping the chicken on a nice rotation on the grill.
Isaiel Taking a Turn At the Grill
Amazingly, we cooked the bird on the grill for a long time, yet none of it burnt and the insides were juicy and so tasty.
Just About Ready To Eat
Amarily spread more of the marinade on the chicken a couple of times. I can tell you this much. It's made from recardo and vinegar and  a bunch of other spices as well.
Amarily Basting the Chicken
I almost forgot. Dianna and Amarily also made a crackerjack potato salad that went perfectly with the chicken and tortillas. We ate till we were about ready to pop.

Then it was back to the pool. O-B didn't have as great an appreciation for the pool as did Joshua. He took to it like a fish and splashed around most of the afternoon.
Isaiel and Kids Enjoying the Pool
As the day wound down, Joshua really didn't want to quit playing in the pool.
Isaiel and Kids Enjoying the Pool
Of course, April was part of the party. She is convinced she's a dog. Wherever we go in the yard, just like how the dogs follow us around, she does too. Sometimes right in the way. Here she's blocking the sliding door - as cats do.
April Even Got In the Act
Of course, this was right at the point where we were moving stuff from the kitchen to the palapa so we could eat. A gentle guide foot gets the mission accomplished.
April Being Nudged Out of the Way
This was a great way to spend the holiday. Pretty much impromptu and a lot of fun.


JRinSC said...

Wow... I don't see how you can manage to post your blog photos with that little of slice. Is there another tier of use that costs more but gives you some more reasonalble useage?

That is tough. Might BTL or another cable setup be more effective?



Dave Rider said...

Hi Julian,

I'll tell you, it's a good thing I tend to get up at 'Oh-Dark-Thirty' most days, during the free period (2-7 AM EST)so I can post the photos otherwise, I'd be toast.
I've heard Netking is now offering a better deal, but it's with a Mexican IP address. I'll check it out anyway.
I'd go with BTL in a heartbeat but they still block Skype and all the other similar services.
We don't have cable out here. We're on the wrong side of the tracks, as it were.


JRinSC said...

I have friends in TN that bought a new patio home and in their community they had to use the signal brought in by the local power company running on the power lines just like cable people bring the internet to me on their cable lines. That seems like the way of the future. Better than separate cable lines or DSL. Maybe you'll see it down there. The power lines are already there so all they'd have to add would be the "modem" at your end. Of course, there's got to be more than that but it would be good to break BTL's stranglehold wouldn't it.

See ya,