Tuesday, March 2, 2010
The Winter Vacation - Post Four - Grand Turk
We arrived in Grand Turk about 11:30am ships time, after relaxing all morning on the ship decks. We had on bathing suits and I had covered up with 70 sun block. We were ready for our kayaking adventure! We met our guides in the Grand Bar and headed toward a bus that would take us to the point of entry. We passed by small herds of donkeys and horses, learning that they ran wild on the island!
There were about 14 people kayaking with us, two per kayak, and we climbed into our clear bottom kayaks, Mr. Bryant in front and me in back. We immediately had issues with who was steering, what side we should paddle on, general communications challenges. I quickly harumphed and said, "I just won't paddle." Well, I didn't paddle, but as other couples glided past us following the guide I thought I needed to dip my paddle in to help. The minute my paddle hit the water, Mr. Bryant's head would swivel around to look at me - and I would stop paddling again.
We were not doing well.
We glided over to the Red Mangroves and listened to our guide explain how critical the Red Mangrove Tree's were to the island. We also learned about the White Mangroves, and the Black Mangroves - all three species grow well on Grand Turk and are an important part of the ecology. And then I saw some movement in the water, and there, swimming along, was an Upside Down Mangrove Jellyfish! A tiny specimen, for sure, but it certainly made me smile! I tapped Mr. Bryant on the shoulder and pointed, and he capture some pictures for us. Now we were both grinning again.
We followed our guide and other kayaks to a coral beach and got out to walk around. People were finding white conch shells every where they looked, but I spied a real treasure on a little rise. It was so beautiful! I left it there on the beach where I found it, but again, we were smiling.
We took a hike to see the coral and the surf, and Mr. Bryant caught a picture of a flock of pink flamingos. We walked over the beach back to our kayaks, and a few people took a dip in the warm clear waters. Then we all headed back up stream to catch our bus back to the boat.
We got back to the cruise port in time to take a dip in the ocean ourselves, and sat for a moment or two on the beach chairs before heading on board. We had just enough time to get ready and make it for dinner (it was the second formal night).
Karla and James came zooming in at the last minute - they had been riding on beach jeeps across the island and had a Wonderful Time! Mr. and Mrs. Hanson and Mr. and Mrs. Costabile had spent the day shopping at the cruise port and eating at Margaritaville, and everyone looked pretty content.