Travelling from Orange Walk to Belize City I was on a full chicken bus, standing up for most of the moderate journey. Aside from one other tourist, the bus was packed with locals making their way to the nation’s major city. As we went by, the bus would often stop and people would come and go at seemingly random spots.
Eventually the bus emptied to the point that I was able to score a seat, sharing a typical bench seat with two young kids, a boy and girl traveling with their mother sitting in front. I’m terrible with ages, but the two cheerful kids were probably between 5 and 9 years old. The kids basically took up the space of only one adult so it wasn’t too bad with the three of us on there.
At first they didn’t seem to be too bothered that someone had sat next to them. They were too wrapped up playing little games. At some point the boy noticed I wasn’t really doing anything as I sat there and asked if I’d like to play a game. With not much else to do and not wanting to turn down the invitation, I asked “what type of game?”. The response was a game I had never heard of, met with giggles and surprise.
We settled on Paper-Scissors-Rock (a universal game), probably playing that for a good 10 minutes which amounts to a lot of rounds for such a simple game. They didn’t seem to mind, thoroughly amused the entire time. Their mother also seemed pleased that they weren’t getting up to mischief. Our game was sadly cut short (or maybe not, my enthusiasm waning much faster than theirs) on the outskirts of Belize City as the family reached their stop.
Truly one of the best bits of traveling by public transport when overseas is the opportunity to meet locals, even if it’s just to have your rock covered by paper by a Belizean kid passing the time.
Have a similar story from taking public transport or interacting with local kids? Share it in the comments below.