Posted by Amanda
After a less than exciting first day, we decided to jump on an SAS trip. We had heard about all of these beaches but we aren't near them. The thought of working things out with a taxi driver didn't seem fun. Plus, so many of the students rented villas on various beaches--mostly Flic en Flac--and I didn't want to run into them having spring break.
There was a trip that we had wanted to go on but didn't sign up for thinking we could try to do it independently. We got to the buses before everyone to try to get the seats of two no-shows. A number of other students had the same idea. For a few moments I thought we weren't going to get on because everyone was cutting in line and pushing forward. Both Noah and I uttered variations on the phrase "I don't mean to be a b****, but we were here first." It worked out that all 20 of us got to go because that many students didn't show up.
We went south on the island to Black River Beach to board our catamarans. There were a lot of people on the trip, about 100. We got on a catamaran with some other adults and their children thinking it might be a bit calmer than the others with more students. The crew was quick to start serving alcohol to the students. We did see some dolphins but as soon as we saw them, all the boats would get closer and the dolphins would swim away.
When it was time to snorkel they handed out the equipment but there weren't enough breathing tubes. Noah and I started swimming with just masks. The water was lovely. It was so clear and warm. The fish were right there being fed by the crew while we swam around them. The reef was very close below us though people who snorkel told us later that it was dead. In any case it was so fun to swim. We finally did get to try the snorkel. I got the hang of it but Noah had some trouble. It is hard to get used to it since it is completely against nature to breath underwater. But it was totally cool to breath underwater! In the end I was one of the last ones out of the water.
They cooked us a lunch of chicken kabobs and marlin on a tiny grill on the boat. The drinks were flowing which caused some problems for some students. But, I wasn't a trip leader so I didn't let it bother me.
After lunch we cruised around a bit more then we got to swim again. It was great fun. Of course the boat was anchored to a piece of coral which meant the coral was dead. One student, Monita, is a very good swimmer and kept finding sea cucumbers on the bottom. She actually picked one up so we could touch it. It was very cool. Again, I was one of the last to get out of the water. It was just so wonderful. I'm ready to try a beach tomorrow even if it means figuring out the taxi stuff.
We hung out on the boat deck and slept a bit on the way back to the bus. Then home for a shower.
For dinner we joined a group of RDs that we don't usually go out with. We hit a seafood place on the waterfront. It was nice to be with new poeple and dinner was good too. Then home to bed.