Sandy -This morning the group went to Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, Galapagos' capital, to visit the Interpretive Center. I did not go because 4 hours will be spent in the town and I cannot imagine not elevating my leg for that long. So I spent another day on the boat, which was quite pleasant and comfortable, and sat outside with my binoculars. I was fascinated by all the creatures I saw, despite having seen everything before. We had a partial crew change early this morning. Teo has left and Jonathan has taken his position. We have a new chef named Fernando and a new crew member named Carlos-- nice men. The oldest crew member, Clinton, has been on boats for many, many years. The afternoon hike and snorkeling were shorter than planned since our 5 new passengers didn't board until after 2:30 PM.
Leif – A satisfying breakfast of eggs, rolls, fruit and cereal began a relaxing day on San Cristobal. A short Zodiac ride brought us to the port of the Capitol of the Galapagos, Puerto Baquerizo Moreno. From this port we rode a small bus for 5 minutes before reaching the Interpretive Center. Here we were immersed in the fascinating history of the Galapagos Islands. Its history was plagued by many failed attempts, starvation, dictators, complicated love triangles, broken dreams and deaths. The only positive, successful expedition to the Galapagos before the 20th Century was achieved by Charles Robert Darwin and Captain FitzRoy. Civilization finally found a way to live in such a remote area of the world; however, there are still many problems these people face - a lack of abundant fresh water, dependence on fossil fuels and the need for agricultural practices to sustain a growing population. All beg immediate attention. After this informative learning session our group headed back to town and split into 2 groups. One group, leaving, said their good-byes and went with Samuel to the airport. The rest of us moseyed around through stores and cafes. The souvenir shops all sold nearly the same thing. I bought 3 postcards. I headed to the waterfront boardwalk for a stroll. It was low tide so many exposed rocks provided area for sea lions to rest. At noon our group headed to the pier. The Zodiac brought us back to the Millennium. For the following 3 hours we waited for Samuel to arrive with the new passengers. Both groups participated in introductory welcomes. Immediately we set off for the next island in order to fulfill the scheduled events. At our destination, Lobos Islet, I saw many sea lions and some blue-footed Boobies. These strange birds stood motionless as I crouched beside them to take pictures. Two males sat on the sandy trail protecting their eggs. The males would whistle and the females honk if we got too close. This strange chorus kept us about a yard away from the eggs. We encountered a rare Galapagos snake before we took the Zodiac back to the Millennium. Before dinner Samuel led a short snorkeling expedition to the nearby coastline. Many of us chose not to participate because of the cold water and high winds. I spent the time writing in this journal. Soon we had a magnificent dinner and Samuel's lesson. I retired to my cabin for undisturbed rest.