My alarm clock didn’t have a snooze button this morning. This is because I was woken up by the inaudible shrieks of Noah trying to wake me up. After the same old story with breakfast, we headed to our dive boat to start the day with a breathtaking descent to the RMS Rhone. This ship was sunk 1867 during a huge hurricane. Only one passenger survived: an Italian nonetheless. We explored these remains and saw a huge lobster as big as Bobby Wunderlich. It was absolutely awe filling. At this point I didn’t think anything could top that, but of course I was wrong. We headed to “Ginger Steps”. I know it sounds like an retirement center, but it was far from it. We saw 3 sharks get up and personal with us. I could have reached out and touched it, if Jeff hadn’t warned us. Jeff had us sit at the bottom of the ocean so the Sharks would come up right next to us. I could not believe what I was seeing. A real life shark was in the water just feet from my face. This drove a bit of fear into me, which means, for a teenage boy, I needed food. Fortunately the plan was for us to get some fish and chips at a nice restaurant over on Cooper Island. This is where Noah tried his first fish. He loved it and couldn’t even believe that he had been missing out this whole time. Afterwards, we stayed near the island to snorkel through some sea grass in search for small marine animals. We were not disappointed when turtles, eagle rays, stingrays, and flounder came our way. Casey was hoping for a seahorse, but those seclusive fish stayed in hiding. We finally returned back home at the end of the day. My group and I had to set up for our final test for our final project. So we swam out into the water to put all the pieces in place. I stayed on the beach for an extra 30 minutes just to have a conversation with God, thanking him for all the things he has blessed me with. I was soon joined by my classmates coming down for our evening meal. Dinner tonight was a little reminder of home: Mexican soft tacos. They filled me right up. After dinner, Doc and Jeff hung around so we could complete our final project run. So Noah and I went out to test the blue glowstick in the black night. It was more of a challenge tonight especially since our goggles fogged up more than usual. Tomorrow should be a very tiring day, both mentally and physically. We will meet with our groups one last time to present out projects as well as chase some turtles around for a couple of hours. I wait, eagerly, to grasp the protective shell of one of those turtles.
This morning, Noah was my alarm clock yet again. I think I would have slept the day awake if he hadn’t been there. This morning was the same exact breakfast story as every other day this week, except for one thing: awards were presented. Only 2 awards were presented and they were for the people who showed the most leadership over the course of the trip. For my section, I was awarded this leaderships title and was presented the prize. The red bag in the photo was the gift. After the normal boring morning, we headed off on our final adventure in science. The first half of the day we spent catching invertebrates and learning about them. I caught a Moon Jellyfish and a Sea Urchin. Unfortunately, one of the sea urchins stabbed me in the hand and I spend 10 minutes pulling the spikes out. I was lucky enough not to get an infection from it. The second half of the day was filled with the not so graceful method to catching sea turtles. We were to be dragged behind the boat in search for the these teenage mutant ninja turtles. The first group caught one, however, my group just wasn’t pro enough. We saw a couple of the green monsters but we couldn’t get close enough to catch one. I wa slightly disappointed, but I didn’t let it ruin my day because we still were on an island in the Caribbean. No one can stay mad here. Following the turtle expedition, we gathered with our group to make final adjustments for our presentation. Finally we were ready to present our final project about glow sticks. We were stuck with going last, so by the time we went, the nerves started to kick in. When we did eventually give our speech, I felt comfortable and was happy with the reaction we got from our audience. I was happy with most of the group members effort. We finished up the day with a meal on the beach with music playing. Many people had to do imitations of teachers to earn back things that the lost. It was a great laugh to end the fantastic evening. I am looking forward to giving back to the community tomorrow especially since we learned so much from the environment we are going to clean up.