Archive for the ‘Ragga Crew’ Category
Raggamuffin is blessed enough to have many, many wonderful supporters who travel to Caye Caulker on holidays to take our tours, keeping us very busy throughout most of the year and for that we are very grateful. But it is not only our crew who are kept busy but also our trusty boats…..And with hard work comes general wear and tear. Our four sailboats – Ragga Queen, Ragga King, Ragga Gal and Ragga Prince – are continuously going back and forth to Hol Chan Marine Reserve or down to Placencia on 3 day trips and the constant sun and salt naturally take their toll.
So, at this time every year when the island has quietened down, we give the boats a break one at a time, hauling them out of the water and giving them a much needed makeover from top to bottom. They get a fresh coat of paint both inside and out, repairs are made and the engines get fine-tuned. And after a week of renovations the boats are shiny and new and ready to get back to work!
So far Ragga King and Ragga Prince have had their makeovers and are looking as good as new out on the water. This week it is Ragga Queens turn to get pampered
Soon all of our boats will be ready for another busy year at sea showing our passengers many of the beautiful sites to be found along Belize’s reef.
Working hard as always, Shane spent his birthday not out partying at Oceanside, but on Tobacco Caye during a 3 day trip to Placencia. He arrived home to the island this morning therefore we would like to take the time now to wish him a very happy birthday for Wednesday!!!
If you have had the pleasure of having Shane as a crew member on your tour then you will be more then aware that he is character hard to forget. Dancing, singing, back-flipping and “ouching” his way around the boat, he will make sure that there is never a dull moment. His natural ability to entertain his passengers combined with his skills as a deck hand has resulted in Shane becoming a highly regarded member of the Raggamuffin team, and we know he will only continue to improve.
Shane is a great person and a dedicated worker and we wish him nothing but success and happiness.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY SHANE!!!! Have a fun weekend celebrating!
Many of our passengers have come to us after being out on one of our tours telling us how delicious the shrimp ceviche was and asking us to give them the recipe……..So we decide to make this video, starring none other then Captain Jerry, so that you are all able to make as much ceviche as you desire at home!
Watch and enjoy, then try it for yourselves
Today all of us at Raggamuffin Tours want to wish our dear friend Captain Kevin a very happy birthday!!!! Kev has been part of the Ragga Crew for about 5 years now and was promoted to the position of Captain last year. From a deck hand trying to find his sea legs, to a highly respected and very skilled sailor and guide, Kevin has come a long way and we couldn’t be prouder of him. We know that all of our passengers that have been lucky enough to have Kevin on their trip over the years have only wonderful things to say about him and would have experienced for themselves what a kind and free-spirited person he is…..And if you were really lucky you may have even gotten a personal astronomy lesson from him
So happy birthday to you Kev!!!! Wishing you a day filled with fun and a lifetime filled with nothing but joy and success.
Best wishes and blessings from all your ballys at Raggamuffin…..and across the globe! Peace!
On Saturday night the whole crew gathered together to celebrate Captain Patrick’s birthday. It was the perfect night with lots of food, drinks, music and a full moon shining bright above us. Everyone from Raggamuffin was there, as well as all of Patrick’s other friends from the island….Plus some of his family came out from Cayo to join the party which was a great! Captain Patrick has been part of the Ragga Crew for about 7 or 8 years now and is a much loved member of the team. With his big smile, even bigger blonde hair and happy-go-lucky nature, it’s just about impossible not to love him …….So there is no way we were going to miss his special night.
By 7pm things were already heating up. The boys were busy at the bbq cooking up a whole lot of lamb (a big treat for us Caye Caulkians) while the rest of us poured ourselves a drink and chatted away together. There was certainly no shortage of food or drinks – which is essential at a Belizean party. And at about 9pm some of Patrick’s friends arrived with their drums in hand and put on a live performance for us. Captain Jerry was the first one up dancing to the Garifuna beats….naturally . After that Patrick blew out the candles on his cake while the rest of us song him ‘Happy Birthday’, and then the birthday bwoy advised us that Part 1. of the celebrations was over and that we were going to head over to the Full Moon Party on the north side of the island for round 2. We headed downstairs and loaded ourselves into Jimmy and Charlie’s boat and soon after arrived at the next party were we danced till 3 o’clock in the morning!
Everyone had a great night, but most importantly Patrick had a good time. He was just happy to have all his friends and family there to celebrate with him. And we were grateful to be there.
Happy Birthday Captain Patrick!!!!! We wish you many more. Bless up!
Our last order of new tents has finally arrived and we love, love, love them! These tents have better aerodynamics to withstand the sometimes high winds that can occur on the islands during a trip, and are of course waterproof as well. So even if it happens to be windy or if there is a bit of rain while you are camping out on Rendezvous Caye or Tobacco Caye, you’ll be sitting high and dry in your tent. So now that the last lot of tents has arrived this means that no matter what boat you are on for the 3 day trip, you will have a brand new tent to sleep in.
We are also in the process of putting brand new sails on Ragga King and Ragga Prince at the moment, so we will put up some photos of them when they are completed. At Raggamuffin we always try and updated our equipment as often as we can to ensure that our passengers have the best experience possible with us, and we will continue to update you on any upgrades we make throughout the year……..Hurray for new tents!
We just had one of our day trip passengers, Dylan, send through a link to us with a blog he had written about his trip to Hol Chan with us, which also includes an incredible video at the end. Definitely take the time to check this out. It also includes some really cool stuff just about Caye Caulker in general.
Thanks Dylan. Great job!
Click here to see it for yourself….
In early March I embark on the 3 day sailing adventure with Raggamuffin Tours. It was the thing I had most been looking forward to doing since booking my trip to Belize at the beginning of the year….and I wasn’t disappointed!
We boarded The Ragga King early in the morning with nothing but blue skies above, and set sail bound for Placencia. There were 13 of us on the boat – 7 Scandinavians, 2 Brits, 3 Americans and me, the Aussie. A mixed bag of passengers from across the globe, but all with the same intention…. to have an amazing time on the Caribbean Sea.
On our first day we fished from the back of the boat, and stopped twice to snorkel while on our way to Rendezvous Caye. The snorkelling was incredible at these stops. There were no other boats around so it was very private. The coral formations at the first stop are the best I have ever seen. After the second stop we had all worked up a decent appetite, but thankfully our lunch had been served up and was waiting for us when we hopped out of the water….now that’s service!
We reached Rendezvous Caye at about 4 o’clock in the afternoon. This small patch of sand surrounded by the reef, with a few coconut trees scattered across it was to be our home for the night. It was the type of tropical island that you would see on the front of a post card. Perfection. First things first we had to set up our tents on the beach while there was still some light, and after that was done we sat back with a rum punch in hand and watched the amazing sunset in front of us. After snacking on some delicious shrimp cerviche, the Captain served up our dinner. It was a feast of fish – that had been caught by one of the passengers earlier in the day – along with lots of vegies and rice. There wasn’t a thing left by the time we were done. The night ended around a campfire, toasting marsh mellows, listening to one of the boys play his guitar and sharing travel stories with each other.
The next morning I got up early to watch the sunrise and to go for a nice swim to wake me up. I really couldn’t think of a better way to start the morning. Well that was until the amazing breakfast was served. We stuffed ourselves silly again, packed up our things and boarded the boat for another day of sailing. The snorkelling was equally as beautiful on the second day, and we managed to catch 2 BIG barracudas on the lines (plus what the captain caught spear fishing). Besides being in the water, I spent my day working on my tan and reading my book. It was so nice to just sit back and relax and enjoy the beauty around me – always with the sweet sounds of reggae filling the air.
We arrived on Tobacco Caye later that afternoon, and I headed straight to the beach bar for a nice cold beer to cool me down. Again we set up our tents and got organised and then sat back and relaxed on the dock together. The crew opened the “boat bar” and served up more cerviche for us. Then after dinner we all gathered around to watch some live Garifuna drumming performed by the locals. They were incredible! The captain got us up one by one and showed us how to dance punta – well try to anyway. It was a lot of fun. The whole group hung around the bar till it closed, and then took the hint to head off to bed.
I woke in a slight rum haze on the last day, and slowly gathered my things together to get ready for departure. It was a bit sad knowing that the trip was almost over. That day was the hottest of the three, so I piled on the sunscreen and found my spot on the boat. There were lots of laughs along the way as the recounted things from the night before. Everyone had really gotten to know each by this stage. We stopped three times this time because of the heat so that we could cool ourselves off in the water. I helped to pull up the sail after one of the stops which made me feel like a professional sailor.
We reached Placencia at 4.30pm and reluctantly hopped off the boat. The trip went so fast, I didn’t want it to be over. I said my goodbyes to everyone and swapped email addresses, put my backpack on and headed on my way.
Raggamuffin’s overnight trip was such an amazing experience, and I will never forget it. The crew were fantastic – being both professional and fun. I felt like every aspect of the trip was so well thought out, and I enjoyed every moment. I would definitely recommend it to everyone who visits Caye Caulker, and hope to be able to do it again myself one day.
Early on Saturday morning many of Reynolds’ friends and family began the journey down to Hopkins for the end of his Nine Nights celebration (a Garifuna memorial service) – This is considered the family’s final farewell to the spiritual double of the dead who is believed to remain in the house after the burial. It is only now that his trip to the other world begins. This service would generally occur nine nights after the burial, but in this instance it happened later.
We all definitely had mixed feelings on our way there. We never would have missed it, but it certainly began to bring up old feelings from when Ren passed, and at a time when we were just beginning to come to terms with the whole situation, so it was difficult for us. It was hard to know how we would feel when we went back his grave, but we just wanted to be there to set our friend free.
We went to Reynolds’ family home soon after arriving in Hopkins to visit his Mother and the rest of the family in order to show our support. It was while we were out the back of the house talking to Aunty Jane that Patrick turned to all of us and said “Jasre is here” – for those who don’t know this is Reynolds’ beautiful daughter, the joy of his life. We hadn’t seen her since just after the funeral as she had left the island with her mother, and we had no idea that she would be there. It was such a blessing to see her laughing a playing along the beach with the other children. She is looking more and more like her father, and you could definitely feel his presence all around her. It was a wonderful moment.
The celebrations began as the sun went down. People gathered in the front yard and listened to the Garifuna drumming as well as to a DJ who played songs for Reynolds that would awaken his spirit. We talked, drank rum and shared our memories of Reynolds throughout the night. And at midnight we gathered around a table cover in pieces of coloured cloth and paper that was set up in the middle of the yard to represent his grave. As part of the Garifuna culture we each took the time to search through the pile of fabric and ribbons and remove all of the pins that were attached – this is done as an act of releasing the spirit. This is what you can see on top of his grave in the photos above. The cloths were then packed up into a box, ready to take to the burial ground at sunrise. The music and celebrations carried on till the early hours of the morning and could be heard all across the town, which was otherwise in a sleeping silence.
Then as the sun began to light up the horizon we made our way to the cemetery for the final service. This was the hardest part. We gathered around Ren’s yellow and white grave, where he is buried above his brother, and placed our hands on him and lost ourselves in prayer and thought. Only the sounds of a drum and a wailing family member could be heard, which only added to the already sombre moment. As the drummer eventually left the cemetery we were left in silence. None of us really knew what to say. It was still all so surreal. Even almost 4 months down the track it is still impossible to believe that he is gone, and we were again left asking ‘why’? Why did he have to leave us? We will never be able to get an answer to that question, but over time the acceptance and healing will bring us some peace. We kissed his grave and said our goodbyes to our friend and walked away knowing that he is now truly free. It was heartbreaking to have to leave him behind. We headed down the beach on watched the end of the sunrise…. The beginning of a new day.
Keep resting in peace Ren. We love you.
Despite the possibility that she may not be thrilled about me announcing the arrival of her birthday to the world, i simply couldn’t let Charlie’s special day just slip by unnoticed. Therefore i do promise not to mention any “numbers” in this blog, but i will however use this message to send our love and best wishes to her today.
Mother, wife, boss, friend, mentor, comforter, advice-giver, support system, party girl……Charlie means so much to so many people – both on Caye Caulker and around the world – and we wish nothing but the best for her today and everyday.
So Happy Birthday to you Charlie! May this next year of your life be everything you have dreamt it to be. One filled with love, laughter and good times.
………..Now let the celebrations begin!