3 sea cucumbers, 2 pipefish, and a yellow spotted stingray in a pear tree… – April 28, 2006

It might as well be Christmas in April!

~ ~ ~

Yesterday and today were SO much fun!

Yesterday we were in Grand Caymans, a port we have to tender into port, (ten-der: a verb: to be shuttled back and forth from the main land to your boat in little boats, taking so much longer than really neccessary and generally being a hassle all around) so that was a pain.

Judy, Matt from Youth Staff (AKA Kid Wranglers), and I went to Seven Mile Beach, the only beach in Grand Cayman that wasn’t completely destroyed by Wilma. It’s a beautiful stretch of what I’m assuming is seven miles of white sand and crystal clear blue water. I, of course, brought my snorkel, because frying myself silly on the sand doesn’t much appeal to me. (AKA laying out)

I didn’t see much, but it was beautiful. I did see a bristle worm, two dead conchs, one containing a tunicate of some sort with bristles, and a diadema urchin with long, banded spines. (I could get really nerdy and explain all of what that was, but I won’t bore you with the details)

Then we came back for Rock on Broadway, which went fine. I’m in over 50% of it now, so next week I think I’ll be back in all of it, or so. I’m not feeling 100% dance-wise because I’ve been fighting a cold since I got on board (it’s winning- I sound like a man) and my back’s been angry with me for ever dancing again. (So it’s decided to hurt all the time right now. grrrr)

Today, after a little bit of rehearsal, we met Gareth, Catherine, Judy, Dario, Franchesco, Matt and Kelly at Paradise Beach, which was beautiful. Oh! And I finally got to live out my dream of sipping a margarita on the beach! (It’s just as wonderful as I imagined!) Angela, my friend from South Africa (who we’ve decided I’m going to go visit and swim with a great white shark while I’m there someday, my #1 thing I must do before I die…) came, and we split some nachos too…. yum. Today, I like guacamole, just so you know. Most days I don’t, but some days I do. Today was one of those days. (That kills Levi- he can’t make heads or tails of my on-again-off-again liking of things… heheh, gotta keep them guessing!)

Then Gareth wanted to borrow my mask, so I taught him the basics of clearing his mask and off he went. Fifteen minutes later he came back and was GLOWING. “I love this so much Selena!” he said in his perfect Essex accent. “No, I really, REALLY love it!” So he was hooked. He wanted to buy a mask right then and there, but there weren’t any for sale, so he rented one and he asked me to go with him.

Sooooo…. I did! We saw a bunch of great stuff. Impatient sea cucumbers, french grunts, doctor fish, two spotted boxfish, feather duster worms, a parrot fish, lots of little wrasses, a school of about 30 fish, and lots of mermaids bottle brushes. I pointed it all out to him, in between him draining his mask of water. (It didn’t fit him too well since it was a rental) Gareth had a blast! He even saw a snake eel on the way back in himself! He said it was so much more fun with me. (Look Ma! My geeky, life-time obsession with the ocean and that $100,000 education finally paid off!)

We got back on land, and I couldn’t resist buying some jewelry. (Anyone who knows me knows I’m a sucker for unique shell jewelery!) $40 later, Angela rented some snorkel gear and we went into the water again. (She got excited by how much fun Gareth had!)

We saw a lot more than Gareth and I did. After teaching her the basics too, we saw another cucumber, and bristle worms, french grunts, doctor fish, some blue tangs of some sort, two pipe or trumpet fish, a brittle star, a baraccuda, and what I thought was an octopus turned out to be a beautiful yellow spotted sting ray! (In my defense, it was buried, and when I just saw his siphon and eyes, it looked like an octopus, but then I touched it and it unburied itself! Shhhh, don’t tell my professors!)

(And all the while I’m thinking: “So THIS is what ship life is about…. or at least what it’s going to be about for me!”)


2 Responses to “3 sea cucumbers, 2 pipefish, and a yellow spotted stingray in a pear tree… – April 28, 2006”

  1. ML Says:

    The local word for sea cucumbers is “bobolati” with the emPHAsis on the “la.” Do you know that I live in an area (and I use that term loosely considering I am talking about the Pacific Ocean and “area” could easily cover 4 time zones!), that has some of the best dive and snorkeling spots in the world and I’ve never been snorkeling!!! That’s it! You’ve inspired me–I’m going!!

  2. Selena Says:

    Good! I’m so glad. You do live in such a beautiful area, you’ve got to take advantage of all that goregous ocean for me! Blog all about it so I can enjoy it vicariously! hehe!

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