Monday, September 13, 2010

Rainy Day Schedule

I blame Nick again. For my tolerance to painful boat seats. But more on that later.

Thunderstorms here on this island are absolutely spectacular. The sky gets dark for miles around because the horizon is so clear here, you can see so far, and there are no buildings to obstruct your view. The sky opens up and downpours torrential rain and then just as quickly lets up, leaving everything bright green and blue. Lightning comes both in bolts and flashes, producing rolling thunder that echoes all around you, through the open space.

I set my dirty laundry out on the line, knowing it was going to be doused in fresh water at some point during class. Sure enough, during a fairly boring recap of our previous nights (obvious) reading, the rain let loose and drenched everything. After a hearty and delicious lunch, we set out again for another mangrove island to continue attempting to ID fish, algae and animals by scientific name. However, we had the wonderful fortune of stumbling upon a squid free floating today, and 2 nurse sharks. One of them swam away as soon as we happened upon it, but we quietly came up on another one, and were able to get pretty close to it. I swam down and was face to face with the shark, about 2 feet between our two heads. The shark was beautiful, small clear dark spots making up its chocolate brown color, amber eyes, and peaceful movements. I was awed by its presence. The rest of the snorkel went off without a hitch, but the second group to go out had to come back early due to the approaching lightning. This is where I blame Nick again. The sea was fairly stormy and we were traveling back to the docks against the current and wind. The waves were about twice as big and wide as the ones on Shaver Lake and I was not sitting on a cushion. No, I was clinging wildly to an orange PFD to prevent myself from slamming into fiberglass seats on the way back. However, I have a specific tolerance to painful boat seats *cough* Aluminum Falcon *cough*. We made it back in one piece, if not pelted by the rain, and we settled in for a nice, warm peanut butter cookie/brownie snack.

2 of us decided to go get some $1 chicken at Chicken Bar (called that for its delectable, ketchup smothered chicken, duh!) but it wasn’t frying up yet, so we trekked to Cham-B’s a local market of sorts. I found a nice can of (cheap!) Kern’s pear juice and an Almond Joy bar, and enjoyed the delights of American foods.

More storming throughout the day and some intense reading on reef fishes later, it was time for some fun and games for the night. Catchphrase wrapped up the evening with raucous laughter and loud awkward attempts at charades, and it is time to hit the hay. I find myself particularly exhausted, even when we barely do anything because of rain, like today. Whew.

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