On Tuesday, we began with our yummy breakfast, the blog and some photo-ID. Morning break was early because lunch was early because today was Shark Day! But, there was a surprise in store, one that was about to be very appropriately foreshadowed…
The boat departed at 1300 and as we were departing the harbor, some of us saw a spotted eagle ray leap out of the water! Since we were not searching for dolphins, we were allowed to lay down on the boat: it was amazing! Especially since some of us were sure to keep watch, in case we did see dolphins. We arrived at Honeymoon Harbor, our surprise location. Honeymoon Harbor is a small area on Gun Cay where our adventure began with a casual jump into the water with a barracuda. There were so many stingrays right away; we were all a little bit nervous. Tyler was busy feeding one stingray and another decided to see how his arm tasted! He has the love mark to prove it. Several others of us did get nibbled and sucked on, but these did not leave marks. While Veronica was taking a photo in one direction, a stingray casually swam past her, rubbing right up against her face! We all stopped keeping track of how long Kaelin was continually laughing as the stingrays tickled her feet. Casey got a stingray hug, as a ray wiggled right up her ventral side (her belly). Morgan asked them to back off – she has a three date rule! Check out this picture of Nicole trying her hand at using Captain Al’s camera! We were soon joined by other marine friends: several nurse sharks and another barracuda. There was also a mystery shark, but we couldn’t tell what it was. On our return to the boat, the barracuda “stalked” us and one stingray snuck up on Andrea. As we got closer to the boat, we saw a group of nurse sharks “snoozing” under the boat!
Once we were actually on the boat, we had snack on our way to the main destination. Dom is still talking about the Craisins: “I’m crazy for Craisins!” We arrived at Triangle Rocks, we asked all our scared questions about sharks biting people and Captain Al tried to tell us about his shark scar (not real!). He briefed us about what to expect and how to stay safe before baiting the sharks. Some of us were nervous, but we were all super excited to get in the water with three Caribbean reef sharks and one sharpnose. The largest reef shark was about six feet long! Sometimes they came really, really close to us. It was a little unnerving, but it was really cool to see animals to compare to the dolphins. The sharks are all about the slow cruise and it was amazing to be that up close and personal with them, even if eye contact with a shark is much different than with a dolphin!
The ride home was “Suntan City” as the ladies in the group were taking advantage of the lack of datasheet and search duties! Back on land, Dom, Patrick, Ben and Nicole went to the beach while others of us felt too crispy for more sun. We all met back up in the common room for delicious mac-n-cheese, chicken and baked beans. We loved dinner, but still managed to keep room for ice cream dessert. After hours of observing Casey’s hair braiding school, Dom successfully graduated and braided Michelle’s hair. His clients are lining up…
Today was a RAY of sunshine,
The Podfia (EKU 2016)
PS: In case you missed it, that “Hoo-ha-ha” in the title is a reference to Finding Nemo.