It was a pretty damn busy Monday for not being at work! So much so that I forgot both my camera and my phone at the resort, so pictures were pretty non-existent for the day. It was the BEST Monday we have had in a very long time, though!
We got up, to an alarm, at 0730. I’m sure it’s no surprise that waking up to an alarm when you’re in warm, sunshiney paradise is a whole lot easier to stomach than waking up to an alarm in frigid, dark Central PA! We headed to the Tipsy Seagull for some breakfast and made plans with other divers in our group to meet up at 0900 to head to the first dive of the day.
Our first dive of the day was at Buddy’s Reef, the house reef at a a dive resort called Buddy Dive, a few minutes up the road from our resort. The entrance and exit were super easy thanks to a set of newish, sturdy, metal steps. The visibility was great and the reef was stunning, fully of color and life! We saw an octopus tucked in a coral and a TON of Black Durgon. On the way back to the resort after the dive, we saw our first flock of pink flamingos in the wild. I imagined they would be pink, but, I didn’t think they would be that pink!
After inhaling some lunch back at the resort, I decided to try my hand at snorkeling and took an after lunch snorkel right off the pier at the Tipsy Seagull restaurant, at Eighteenth Palm, the house reef at the Plaza Resort. My first experience snorkeling was AWESOME! We saw a school of barracuda, a ton of parrotfish and a few porcupine pufferfish.
After our snorkeling adventure, we wet up with other divers at 1400 to head north on the island to a dive called Karapata. The entry to the dive site was down a set of stone stairs to a concrete platform where divers backrolled into the water from the concrete platform, after timing the waves in order to avoid the rocks below. I geared up and made it to the concrete platform before my nerves got the best of me and I called the dive before it even started. Josh made the dive and thought it was “like being at camp, underwater,” full of underwater peaks and valleys.
Josh described the dive site as amazing and only a little blood was spilled when everyone exited the water. I was a bit jealous. Not of the blood spilling part, but, of missing the amazing dive site. I put it on my list for another day when I was feeling more confident. On the way back to the resort, the drive took us through the the town of Rincon and countryside. We got to see wild goats and donkeys roaming the streets freely. Surprisingly, they didn’t seem to mind the constant flow of vehicle traffic at all.
Since we got back to the resort pretty early, we decided to get another dive under our belts before dinner. A dive buddy led the sunset dive at the Eighteenth Palm house reef and it was a great 20th dive for me! We saw a sharptail eel, a small spotted moray eel and a bunch of parrotfish. After the dive, we got out of the water and walked a few feet into the restaurant to have dinner, soaked in saltwater, wrapped in towels. It was pretty convenient!
After dinner, Josh met up with another dive buddy to do a night dive at 2130. They were blessed to see a few large eel and tarpon. We rinsed our gear and ended up back at our room at 2315, salty and exhausted. It was another completely fantastic day in the Caribbean!