Related post: A Mayan dinner party for 12.21.12
As we left Eladio Pop’s cacao farm deep in the Belize rain forest headed toward his family’s homestead, it began to drizzle. We were ready for lunch after spending the morning tromping about his 30-acre jungle farm and learning about the growing cycle of the cacao bean. The bus wheezed up a steep road past a cluster of thatched houses and parked next to a simple cinder block building. Inside Eladio’s wife and eldest daughter twirled between the stove, a long wooden table and back again delivering plates of food, a blur of turquoise in their matching dresses.
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I almost didn’t go. Even though the thought of spending Chocolate Week at Cotton Tree Lodge sounded like a home run as a vacation adventure it was a lot of money and I was having trouble finding someone to go with me. When I called to find out how much room was still available I was told there was only one cabana left: the Jungle House.
All of the other cabanas are nestled around the Cotton Tree Lodge with views of the Moho River. The Jungle House was a quarter of a mile away by itself. Um. By myself and deep in the jungle? I wasn’t sure about this. But after some prompting from friends and family that it would “be good for me” I took a deep breath and sent in my deposit.
And then I thought of my friend Carol. Carol bakes and blogs at The Pastry Chef’s Baking. A business manager at a media mogul in Silicon Valley (that shall remain nameless) Carol had once taken time off from work to get a culinary arts degree before deciding she’d rather keep her love of baking as a hobby. Nonetheless, Carol is a true chocolate geek. So I sent her an e-mail seeing if she’d be interested.
“How much time do I have to decide?” she wrote back. I explained that I had already reserved the cabana, she just had to figure out her flights, and could really have up to the last minute to decide. Within a half hour I got a response.
“I’m in.” Phew.
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