Great Day to Be a General

Rain pattering led to sun shining, and we couldn’t ask for a better day on the water.  With our bellies full of scrambled eggs, fresh fruit, and some glorious fried bread pockets, we set out on our trusty catamaran Goliath.  The water was placid and the spirits were high.  It was going to be a great day to be a General.

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After a nice, relaxing boat ride, we arrived at our destination.  No corals here, but it was a breath of fresh air viewing marine life along the mangroves.  Unlike the crystal clear waters on the reef, these slightly murky waters contained some very cool juvenile marine life.

Angel Fish peering out from under the mangroves
Angel Fish peering out from under the mangroves

Light rain turned into a full on thunderstorm, and we had to skid-addle out of the water.  Luckily we had some spectacular bean dip to fend off the ferocious hunger!

The content bean dip crew hiding from the rain
The content bean dip crew hiding from the rain

Then, our fearless leader Dr. Ken guided our trusty stead back to home base at TREC.

Cap'n Ken plowing ahead
Cap’n Ken plowing ahead

We had some downtime to catch up on some readings, work on our group research project plans, and perform some minor surgery!

Sir Squilliam writhing in pain
Sir Squilliam writhing in pain

(Splinter extrication was successful – we expect the patient to recover fully)

We headed back to the dock, where we enjoyed some scrumptious pizza (with optional hot sauce, of course).

Mmm tastes good
Mmm tastes good

At dusk, we set out into the horizon, fearless of the adventure ahead: a snorkel excursion filled with all the mysterious creatures of the night!  Dr. Ken told us about the wonders ahead as we watched Spotted Eagles Rays swoop in and out of the waters in front of us.  Most were itching with childlike excitement, others in fear.  We were issued dive lights, and we dove into another world.

Pufferfish, lobsters, parrotfish, hogfish, squid, octopi, rays, and sea cucumbers… You name it, and we touched it.

Chloe followed this lil guy around for a solid ten minutes
Chloe followed this lil guy around for a solid ten minutes

 

Larry the lobster
Larry the lobster

 

The Bodacious Basket Star
The Bodacious Basket Star
The Stealthy Southern Stingray
The Stealthy Southern Stingray
I call him Hermy
I call him Hermy

Our adventure came to a close after a truly majestic light show thanks to an array of bioluminescence, clouds of plankton that blink and glow under the waves.  We’ll never forget the spectacle.

Love,

Holly Paige, Katie P, & Harry