Since Mary Beth and Sarah arrived on Friday, there was time for an outing on Saturday. Bob Moore, who had to stay in NC this year because of a family medical situation, set up a trip for us to Mexico Rocks.
We gathered after breakfast and boarded a Catamaran run by Catamaran Belize. The Saint Luke's Team has been using this company for years and they are great! Left to right you can see Sarah, Marlene (a tourist from Canada who was a delight to talk to), Mary Beth and Nancy.
After a very long ride over beautiful blue water under a sky full of puffy white clouds, we arrived at a spot that looked pretty much like the whole rest of the trip had looked: turquoise water, puffy clouds, blue sky. We had a quick lesson in how to use snorkeling equipment, then jumped in to discover what all the fuss was about. Above Nancy hops in and tests the water. It was very choppy and hard to negotiate getting used to fins and snorkels for the first time ever. The picture does not do justice to how the water was pushing us around and finding its way up our noses and out our ears. Nevertheless we persevered and perseverance paid off. No one had an underwater camera, but you can go to the gallery at Catamaran Belize to get some idea of what we saw. There are a few of pictures of what was under the water at the very beginning of their gallery. We swam over sting rays, beautiful corals, sea urchins, huge lobsters, schools of colorful fish and sharks. We decided that the sharks had to be nurse sharks since they were pretty big and our guides weren't panicking. Mary Beth was bitten by a remora just after seeing her first shark. You may have heard her scream in NC. Once she realized that she wasn't being eaten (at least not by anything significantly large), she calmed down and chased the thing off, but it did leave a mark.
Mary Beth, Sarah and Marlene after the first swim. We moved to another spot and swam briefly while waiting for lunch.
Lunchtime! Beans and rice, slaw, fresh home made tortillas, foil roasted fish with veggies, chicken and home made salsa. Exactly the sort of meal one needs after a good, long swim. We moved on for a brief swim at one more spot and then headed for home. Our eyes were begging for more time to take it all in, but our bodies were exhausted. We slept like logs on Saturday night.