Although this is technicallythe blog for my fith day in the BVI, today’s entry begins in day four, with the night snorkel. After dinner, we donned our fins and snorkels Ana waded out into the ocean with waterproof flashlights. We saw hordes of small fish and large silvery tarpin that wanted to eat them, strangely shaped slipper lobsters, and even a small squid. My favrote part came when we suppressed the light of our flashlights and churned the water with our hands, causeing bioluminescent plankton two light up in a celestial display. After the snorkel, we went to bed and feel asleep within seconds.
The next morning came with a special surprise: Casey brought us delicous doughnuts for breakfast! The pastries gave us the energy we needed to clean up the rocky shore of the island, were a combination of wind and ocean currents brings in tons of refuse. We collected the trash in large trash bags, and I was amazed by some of the stuff we found. I found a metal faucet, a shoe, and the arm of a baby doll, while other students brought in things like gigantic fuel tanks and entire wooden pallets. Afterwards, I felt an immense sense of pride as the trash was hauled away and the beach was left much cleaner than before.
We returned to the marina to shop at the Dive BVI shop and eat lunch. Due to my house winning the beach games a few days ago, I had fifty dollars of store credit. After much deliberation, I decided to purchase a sticker for my little sister, a hat for my mother, and a t shirt for myself. We moved on to eat a delicious lunch at a nearby restrunt. We were going to need the energy for what came next.
We drove back to Guava Berry to give the findings from our experiment to a panel of instructors from Dive BVI and teachers from Jesuit. I was extremly nervous due to the impact this would have on my grade, but I was much more prepared than last year. My group, consisting of Will Droese, Matt Anderson, and myself, presented our experiment where we recorded the fish populations of areas with diffrent coral structures. Although we hypothesized that the area with primarily staghorn coral would be the most populous, we were surprised when it turned out to be the site with pillar coral instead. We confidently went on too explain how due to equipment constraints, we were unable to accurately mesure a three-by-three meter area each time, and how in future versions of the experiment it would be better to take recordings of multiple sites for each structure. The panel gave us a better understanding of how to better run an experiment in a marine environment, and in the end they lauded our presentation heavily, stating it seemed like somthing a university would preform.
After taking a break for a couple of hours, we left for a church at the top of a hill for mass. The church had a beautiful view overlooking the entire island, and we all enjoyed the meaningful service. We then drove back down to go eat at a delicous restraunt called The Top of The Baths, due to its location at the top of the baths, the large boulders we visited earlier in the trip. As the sun set, we enjoyed some of the best food all week in a delicous buffet, and watched as Casey played a montage of the eventful past week. It all seemed to go by so fast! Afterward, I gave a heartfelt speech of gratitude to Casey and the Dive BVI staff, and thanked them personally as I said my goodbyes. It was a bit bittersweet knowing I wouldn’t see the, next year, however, I had heard rumors of a possible alumnii trip!