Tag Archives: people

The people of Caye Caulker

My first impression of the people of Caye Caulker was: everyone looks Jamaican and is a rastafarian. A striking difference from mainland Mexico, from which I had arrived.

In my few days on the island I got to know a few locals, most of whom hung around the crafts market along Playa Asuncion.

There I met Coco Loco, with his Santa hat. He sells giant seashells. He refused to have a photo taken until I mentioned that I could put the photo online and make him famous. At that point his attitude changed and after eagerly asking “Are you going to put me on YouTube?”, Coco Loco was more than happy to pose. So here’s to you, man: it’s not YouTube but only my humble blog, yet you are now on the internet!

Then there were Debra and Rootsman. They live in the north island and sail to the south island everyday (10 minutes or so) to set up their stall at the crafts market. Debra makes jewellery out of shells, seeds and motherpearl. She explained to me her choice of material and added that most pieces she makes are unique, all different from one another. Rootsman handpaints t-shirts. I had a long chat with them about their crafts as well as Caye Caulker. They expressed their fears about the island becoming increasingly touristy and heading towards what nearby San Pedro has become. It will be very sad if/when it happens.

There was a guy from a stall advertising diving/snorkelling who had spotted me because of my camera and my photography activity around the market, and had therefore nicknamed me “the photographer”. He’d call me everytime I walked past so I’d always greet him in return.

belizephotogallery_064Another artist asked me to have his photo taken, then complained that he looked like his brother!

As a woman you also get a lot of unsolicited  attention from the local guys. As they walk past you they will greet you with “Hello beautiful”, “Hi baby, come over here” and so on. After a couple of days on the island, most of these guys will know you and remember you, they will greet you by name when you bump into them. Because you will, and many times: Caye Caulker village is very small. It can be annoying or fun, depending on your mood. I chatted to a few because I wanted to hear stories about Caye Caulker but always walked away quickly if they became annoying.

One last interesting fact is that there is a high presence of Chinese/Asian people on the island: they run all convenience stores and cheap supermarkets in Caye Caulker village. Quite unexpected for me to be honest!

I didn’t take as many photos of people as I would have liked, for various reasons, including the fact that many refused. Here’s some more random shots though:

Themes at the Jardin Majorelle, Marrakech

Blue is the colour.
It’s intense. It’s vibrant. It’s more blue than you can possibly think.
It dominates the main building in the Jardin Majorelle (Majorelle Garden), an amazing garden and one of the most visited sites in Marrakech. The same blue appears on the large vases scattered around, on the tiles of the pools, everywhere.

All colours in the Jardin Majorelle are very strong and vibrant. Primary colours. Blue. Yellow. Red. They hit you. They call you. You won’t get away without taking dozens of photos, trying to capture them at their best.

And then you have textures. The incisions on the bamboo stems, the tree trunks, the incredible surfaces of the myriad of cactus plants, all with different features. Some looking from another world. You could stare at each of them for hours.

Then there’s people. People are everywhere in the gardens. Tourists walking around to discover the place, locals who visit to find some quiet from the hustle and bustle of the city, young couples hiding in the more secluded corners of the garden, groups of giggling girls on an afternoon out.

I will definitely go back to Jardin Majorelle on my next visit to Marrakech and spend more time there!

Note: a thank you goes to Paul Harris for the three themes, suggested as part of a photography workshop.