It was windy when we arrived on the island, so it was not uncomfortable waiting in line at passport control. Once through, we were whisked off to the harbour where we encountered many sea lions ( there are no seals in Galapagos, two species of sea lions). We are navigating between San Cristobal and Española Islands in the Galapagos, the boat swaying side to side, and I am fading fast after waking up at 5:50 this morning to catch our plane. Although our flight left at 9, we met the students at the Sierra Madre Hotel at 6:30 or so. We were a little taken aback when we opened our front door as we left our apartment and found a drunk man sleeping on the doorstep. When we told the guard downstairs, he did not seem surprised or concerned, acknowledged what we reported and said good-bye!
It was noon when we were motoring toward the MV Santa Cruz, our home for the next four days. I love seeing all the sea lions on the dock and littered on top of the boats. They seem to have taken over the harbour. The Santa Cruz is like an old and weathered boat, but experienced and well organized as always. We were in our rooms and eating lunch in no time. I love it that the ship functions as a well oiled machine. We don't have to work too hard to make things happen exactly as they are supposed to. The ship does the same program week after week and it works for them, so our job is to simply go with the rhythm and flow and enjoy ourselves .
Galapagos is unique because it is full of animals that are not fearful, who stay on their turf and watch us walk by,not very curious about our presence. It is peaceful because there are not too many human inhabitants) , which also keeps the islands pristine and often there is the feeling that the islands are untouched (even if I know they are visited by hundreds each month). The students are entranced every second, expressing themselves with 'oohhs and aahhs'.
It is wonderful to be with Amparo. Her enthusiasm is infecitous; it is her first time here, and everything is new and different and adventurous. I am enjoying all her energy.