Written and edited by Meredith Evridge
Before the sun graced us with its presence, our staff woke up extra early to motor the fleet to the Baths on Virgin Gorda. The hour-long journey was calm and quiet. Students were woken up as The Baths came into view, awestruck at these gigantic, soft edged boulders that seemed like they were dropped onto the pristine sand by some otherworldly presence. Through these rocks, lush greenery enveloped it all. The water was clear and perfect. The Baths are a sight to behold. This island has quite the history, as our students would learn. Some information regarding this island is controversial. According to some sources, its name is short for “batholiths,” which is defined as a very large igneous intrusion extending to an unknown depth in the earth’s crust. It took between fifty and sixty five million years to form.
The Baths are probably one of the most popular tourist hot spots in the British Virgin Islands and are usually extremely packed with vacation goers. Since we had arrived so early, we had prime mooring ball locations and didn’t encounter many people while exploring.
We enjoyed this view, wondering about its origin, while we ate breakfast. Hydrating and putting sunscreen on, we grabbed our snorkel gear and headed ashore. Learning a bit about the formation of the island, we ducked our way through and between the gigantic rocks. We took a moment to snap some photos before beginning our snorkel. It was so clear that we could see about thirty meters ahead of us. There were many moon jellies floating about but we could spot them far off so that we didn’t swim into them. We enjoyed swimming around them because they are a lovely shade of light pink.
We headed back to boats and had lunch underway. We sailed to Hodges to organize ourselves, our boats, and the skits we’d be putting on that night. Some students took their ASA tests as well. Boats received the last thorough deep clean and everything was packed for the next morning’s departure. Once all was sorted, we had a buffet dinner of ribs, mac and cheese, and steamed veggies.
Gathering at 7:45 for the final event, we had a very fun closing ceremony and learned who received diving certifications and ASA certifications too! We gave each other rounds of applause when we heard who had the best chili too. We got to see each boat’s skit, and they were absolutely off the wall. The whole crowd, including the staff, were laughing so hard, loving how we all poked fun at each other. With a few words from Mike, returning campers were given a cheerful yellow Sail Caribbean flag to take home with them. The yawns became contagious and we all headed to boats to have our last boat meeting and hit the hay.
Waking up the next morning at 5:15, everyone grabbed their muffins and luggage and were waved off! It’s not goodbye; it’s see you later! Thank you to all for an amazing two weeks, and fair winds ahead!
(A few more photos of Olympics were received and added for your viewing pleasure!)