Travel Stress Relieved with Tank’s Smile

I am back on at Anthony’s Key Resort (AKR) tonight! It was a great way to wrap up a stressful week! And, my afternoon was complete with a visit to Bailey’s Key to say hello to old friends! Tank was swimming with Bailey and gave me a smile along the way! He has a few new notches in his dorsal fin … maybe from rough play with Stan, Lenca, and Champ?? Speaking of them, Lenca and Champ have grown!! And, Sandy is not the small calf I remember from last year’s video data! I also got to meet Maury’s and Alita’s calves. It was a banner day!

And, it was just as delightful and stress-relieving to see Teri, Eldon, Zach, Gerard, Cain, Meredith, Elyork, and the other trainers, as well as the AKR team members. It felt odd not to give everyone a big hug but to greet with fits bumps and masked faces. But, that’s the sign of the times.

I must admit that even though there are a few more hoops to jump through for travel from the US to Roatan, they are quite straightforward: 1) get a RAPID COVID-19 test (negative) within 72 hrs of travel; 2) complete the online pre-visit form for Honduras; 3) complete the Honduras customs form online (and be sure to have printed copies of all three documents). I also did my registration for AKR online so my arrival was even more effortless than in past!

John took me to Miami and, after not having traveled by airplane in 8 months, I arrived 3.5 hrs early! But, that’s ok. The line was non-existent and before checking in at the terminal, I had to present my 3 forms (see above). Check in was a breeze (thank you American Airlines!) and then TSA check went smoothly, too. Everyone was wearing a mask and actually socially distancing. People were polite, friendly.

As you can see, the gate area was all mine when I got there … but even before boarding the gate area did not get crowded with the plane about half full. Boarding was orderly and smooth. And, it was great to see Roatan from the plane … and the very flat, calm sea!

Not everyone followed directions for deplaning as they flight attendants asked us to go row by row to facilitate social distancing … but it was not a jab-fest either. So, no complaints there. And, going through immigration at the Roatan airport was also orderly with social distance lines and spacing very clearly outlined on the floors and hand-sanitizer offered in several locations.

AKR is also promoting mask wearing and social distancing. I’ll share more of these details as the week progresses … my day began at 4:30 AM and … well, I’m pooped and will start early to prep the MVA and get ready for my first data collection session at about 8:30 or so! Woohoo!

The underwater visibility looked wonderful today … I can hardly wait!

Ron also arrives tomorrow to assist with data collection so I will share his impressions of travel and beginning 2021 with a week at AKR and RIMS!

Until then,