The Great Margration

Stories of my life on the road.

Week Two in BDT October 18, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — margysaur @ 10:08 am
Hola!  Had another great week in Bocas.  As I may have mentioned, I loved the open water diving course, so I decided to go for the advanced open water  certification this past week.  Aquisition of this certification basically just involves having 5 more dives: one has to focus on navigation, and one on deep diving, but the other three you pick from a variety of options.  It turns out that navigation is not my strongest suit – we ended up surfacing quite a ways from the boat, but we could at least see that boat, so I figure that´s good enough? 

 The deep dive was interesting.  The idea is to see if you can handle the increased nitrogen situation that happens at depths of close to 30m.  At the bottom, my instructor signed me a couple of simple math equations, and I got them both correct.  Then she cracked some eggs, and we tossed them around for a bit – the increased pressure makes them cohesive and buoyant.  On the way up, we passed a juvenile manta ray. Learned that it´s hard to squeal when you have a mouth full of rubber.

The next dive I chose was one to help me improve my buoyancy control – trying to hover in place, and swim through different hoops.  Also not a strong suit of mine at the moment, but oh well.  I did a fish identification dive, which was cool as well.  Saw lots of fish, vaguely remembered my instructor telling me what kinds they were, but had no idea what anything really was at the end.

The best, though, was my night dive.  For one thing, the animals are bigger and less shy at night.  Saw countless gigantic crab and lobster.  I also saw a free swimming spotted moray eel, and the ugliest thing ever – a toad fish.  Mid-dive, we spent 5 minutes sitting on the bottom with our lights off, playing with bioluminescent plankton.  Really didn´t want to leave. 

Saturday, I tagged along with some  Dutch and Norwegian girls to an indigenous community, where they have been volunteering with the kids.  The lesson for the day involved showing them a map of the world.  None of them, aged 6ish to 13ish, had seen a map of the world before.  The had no idea where to find Panama on a map.  By the end of the lesson, they were excitedly finding such far-flung countries as Greenland and Mongolia.  It was such a cool thing to be a part of.

Sunday was traveling day.  I managed to miss my bus by about 3 hours, but very luckily tagged along with some Canadians, eh, who were also heading to San Jose.  The trip was much longer than it would otherwise have been, but I survived.  I was delivered to a host family last night, and tomorrow morning, very early, I´ll be heading to the Camoronal Refuge for three weeks of sea turtle work.  I don´t think there´s internet out there, so I may be out of touch a bit. 

Miss you all, and hope you are well!

Walking to the indigenous community.  They live behind the very small airport.
 Building a path to the village.
 Path to the village.
 Finding Panama.
 Back at the CR-Panama border.  It´s less safe than it looks.

One Response to “Week Two in BDT”

  1. kirrilee Says:

    Great to hear its all going well, if you are still near panama the Island of Coiba had some of the best diving I had ever seen, seriously worth some time and effort, great work with the spanish , i am very proud of you and it makes your experience so much better. I am home now , and its nice to be home, at this stage just catching up with everyone , paying bills , finding work etc which is all going pretty smoothly and the weather is great, lots of time at the gym coz I don’t fit into my clothes anymore. Its sort of nice to be on the other side on the blog!
    Buenas Viaje (happy travels) love k

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