Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Snorkel Excursion

Well, I figured it was time to give my blog a new look since I'm in a new country after all. Hope you like it!

I must say, I am forcing myself to write this blog post. I'm getting behind on my updates, so I know it's necessary but man am I beat! I've been incredibly busy with my classes and lessons the last couple of weeks. I've officially taught four lessons on my own, and I really think I'm improving every time, which is exciting because I feel like I'm really starting to nail this whole teaching things down. But, it's taking its toll. I've been at school for 10 hours nearly every day and had to dedicate my entire Sunday to lesson planning. Tonights my first free night I've had in a while, so I'm making sure this update gets done before I forget the details. 

This weekend was an absolute blast. On Friday night, my classmates and I went out to some of the local bars on the beach. I'm starting to realize that this town is so tiny, that you see the exact same group of people any night you go out in Sámara. We've been mingling with the locals here and there, but mostly we just stick to ourselves and have been having a great time. 

Holding a live starfish!
On Saturday we got up and met at the soda for breakfast. A "soda" is Costa Rica's equivalent of a diner; it's basic food for a cheap price, so we tend to go there quite a bit. After eating we went to meet our guide, Pedro, who is also a friend of one of our classmates. Pedro was taking us on a kayak and snorkel tour and we couldn't have been more excited! There were six of us including Pedro, so we took two double and two single kayaks. Kayaking into the waves to get out was a little intimidating, but it ended up being easier than we thought. From there, we kayaked out to a little island called Isla Choro about a mile or so off the coast, which took us about 45 minutes. Once we got there we started to look around and saw something very curious, rocks sliding across the sand in a million directions. At a closer look, we realized they weren't rocks, but thousands and thousands of hermit crabs! It was one of the coolest things I've ever seen. We seized the opportunity to pick some up and snap pics immediately (thankfully my friend Michelle has a waterproof camera so she was in charge of documenting the whole excursion). Then, it was time to put on our snorkels and flippers and go snorkeling. Admittedly, I didn't see much at first. I only saw a few tropical fish and some regular ones, but as we continued to follow Pedro we began to see more and more things. By the end of the snorkeling we had seen lobsters, starfish, blowfish, sea cucumbers, tons of colorful tropical fish and more. We even got to hold the starfish and blowfish and Pedro kept one of the lobsters so we could eat it later! All in all it was an absolute blast. After nearly an hour or snorkeling and getting knocked around by the waves, we were ready for a break. Pedro had just the thing for us, fresh pineapple and watermelon which really hit the spot because I had taken a few mouthfuls of sea water and was ready for a different taste in my mouth. We were planning on going out for round two of snorkeling, but unfortunately the weather had other plans so we packed up and kayaked home. It was a close call as we saw a few lightning strikes on our way back, but I'm happy to say we made it back safe and sound.  
Michelle and I posing with hermit crabs
Later on Saturday night, Nini and I invited everyone over to our place for lobster guacamole. However, once we cooked the lobster and tried a piece, we decided we wanted to eat it plain and not put it in the guac because it was just too darn good on it's own (although some of us kept sneaking spoonfuls of guac and lobster together which is a sensational combination if you've never tried it). The next day I even made stock with the lobster carcass which turned into a delicious little fish noodle soup :)

So much more I'd like to write about but unfortunately sleep is now the priority sense I've still got another lesson to plan this week. Hoping to get another update in soon but until then, pura vida mae. 

P.S. One of my buddy's here, Matt, it's an awesome blogger and did a really awesome piece about some of the crazy insects we're facing down here. If you want to check it out, follow the link!

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