Written and edited by Meredith Evridge

Before the sun had even considered coming over the horizon, our staff began to motor to the Baths. All was still on the water. Students were woken up as The Baths came into view. We could see huge, soft looking boulders seemingly placed on top of each other by some giant, on top of gorgeous, white sand. Lush greenery surrounded 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.

We enjoyed this view, pondering its story, 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 a group picture 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 that we could spot so that we didn’t swim into them. We enjoyed swimming around them – but not too close! We’d later learn about them from one of our Sierra students. They are a lovely shade of light pink.

We headed back to boats and got 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. After boats were cleaned thoroughly and everything was packed for the next morning’s departure, we had a buffet dinner of ribs, mac and cheese, and mixed, steamed veggies.

Gathering for the last night’s closing event, we enjoyed learning who received diving certifications, seeing which student caught a turtle for tagging (first one caught by a student in two years!), and being presented with Sierra projects. We learned about moon jellies, as previously stated, diseases affecting coral, parrot fish, and water quality in the areas we docked and moored. We also learned just how many pounds of cheese we went through as a fleet (sixty). 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. It was a great way to close up the program. With a few words from Mike, returning campers were given a cheerful yellow Sail Caribbean flag to take home with them.

The yawns began to circulate 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 three weeks, and fair winds ahead!

 

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