|Today we got up early and took another ancient school bus from Orange Walk to Crooked Tree. We are staying at the Crooked Tree Lodge which is in the village of Crooked Tree which is in the Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary. Crooked Tree is an island. There is a causeway over to the island and it is surrounded by a huge lagoon. The owner of the lodge kindly picked us up at the highway junction and drove us the remaining four km or so to our cabin.
The cabin is very basic but it is located in a beautiful setting right on the lagoon. There are lots of birds around and the meals in the lodge are fantastic. We have been eating really good since we arrived in Belize.
Crooked Tree is a Creole village. The people speak neither English nor Spanish but Creole which is a fairly modern language. Creole people are a mixture of African, Caribbean natives, Mexican natives, and Spanish. The language was originally used by the African slaves that were brought here in the 1600s to 1800s. It is a pidgin language; that is it was formed from another language by several groups that have no language in common. Different versions of Creole are used around the world based on different languages. There is French Creole, English Creole and several others. English Creole is sometimes called Black English as it was used by African slaves. The slaves came from different parts of Africa and did not have a common language. Some system of communication between the slaves and their masters and between slaves from different tribes were needed. Thus creole was developed. It looks like “baby talk” or very poorly pronounced English. Since their freedom, the Africans have mixed with the several other groups and have adopted Creole as their language.
Some examples of Creole: deze = these, bes = best, helt = health, dem waak = they walked, him belly = his belly, mi kick = I kicked, fi = to, pan = for, tief = to steal, manin = morning, gwan = go on, yard = home, spar = friend, donsi = money.
One manin in January me and my spars dem was coming from a club in Dalston. We didn't have no donsi so we a walk go home. De night did cold and di gal dem wi did have wid we couldn't walk fast. Anyway we must have been walking for about fifteen minutes when dis car pull up, it was this youthman ah know and him woman. We see sey a mini cab him inna. Him sey "How far you ah go"? Me sey "Not far, you ketch we too late man". Anyway before me could close me mout de two gal dem jump inna de car, bout sey dem nah walk no more. Me an Trevor tell dem fi gwan. And de car pull way. Next ting me know me is about 50 yards from my yard and is the wicked dem just a come down inna dem can. At first me wanted fi run, but Trevor sey "run what" "After we no just kool". We don't have no weed or money pon us. Dem can't do notin. Next ting we know dem grab we up anna push we into dem car. Me and Trevor put up a struggle but after a few licks we got pushed in. "Now then you two "Rastas" been ripping off mini cabs haven't you?". "We aren't "Rastas" and we don't know what you are talking about". "Save all that until we get to the station Rastus my son". Den him get pon him radio, and tell the station that him ketch the two responsible for that hold up of the mini cab. Trevor luk pon me I could see that he was worried.