Bahamas January 2014 – week 4

Monday week four started out very chilled with a beach clean from the far point of the Greenforce camp. All of us collected a big black bag full of trash which was a nice way to start the week knowing we had made a small contribution to make a big difference. After lunch we all walked down the beach and went for a snorkel to one rock where we practiced a bit on reef check methods; we took our dive slates with us and wrote down as many fish species and/or families we could see which was a nice way to end the day. As always, Monday evening consisted of the camp meeting where we discuss the previous week, the upcoming week and forfeits, followed by a documentary.

On Tuesday morning we had our usual porridge for breakfast (yum yum), but then had a not-so-usual morning with Wayvil, a Bahamas National Trust ranger, cutting down over-growing trees with machetes. Everybody got stuck into the work even though it was a scorching hot morning. After a couple of hours of machete fun, Wayvil gave us all a tour round one of the paths of the park explaining the importance of the ecology within the park thus making it a protected area. There were lots of indigenous orchids and many small blue holes on this one path which was great to see.

Wednesday morning was a more relaxed morning. We all got a bit of a lie in and then had a sports morning where the camp, including staff had a beach volleyball match. This was so much fun and got us all active, ready for what was planned for the afternoon! Lunch was everybody’s favourite, instant noodles (maybe not!) with a treat of some mashed potatoes and left over kidney beans from the night before. So, with our treat lunch the vibe on camp was great and everybody was keen for our mangrove lecture with Ben. We learnt about the three different types of mangroves there are and the importance of the mangroves. After the  what better way to round it off than actually going for a snorkel down the creek to see some of them. So that’s what we did. In the creek there were loads of juvenile fish hiding in-between the black mangroves, almost like a little underwater village… Very cool to see. The usual Wednesday night shenanigans were next on the list, with the quizmaster this week being the greenforce staff, as they were sorely defeated the previous week… Haha.

Thursday morning started off as a typical dive day, with 2 waves before lunch, everybody got a dive in. After lunch we all went to the local school and taught an hour class. We split up into groups of 2 or 3 and each group had their own class. Florrie, Carolyn and I (Emily) taught the pre-school class which mostly consisted of drawing marine animals and doing the ABC. All the kids were great fun, really cute and were excited to have the greenforce volunteers there. After a tiring hour at the school, we all set back off to camp for dinner and relaxed for the evening.

Friday again started off as a normal dive day with 2 waves but due to complications with the boat, after lunch we all did some self study for the REEF check out on the balcony. Friday nights are usually a 2 beer limit night depending on what we do the following day and as we all had a unanimous vote to have a dive day on saturday, everyone settled for films, tea and Oh Henry chocolate bars, yummy!

Saturday started off with an early start with the first dive going out at 8.30am which was the ‘Golden Girls’ (All the girls) dive. We went to Ampitheatre dive site, which is a personal favourite, and we saw a green turtle! I was super excited as it was the first turtle I have seen diving and it was AMAZING! So a great start to the day followed by the ‘Beige Arrows’ (All the boys) dive. After lunch all the girls went out again for a second dive which was equally great despite no turtles. A great day can only be topped off by a great night and seeing as Saturday night is party night, a great night was inevitable. Saturday nights never fail on being hilarious in club colours, even though it was quieter than usual. Lots of naked run and naked dip forfeits made it an interesting evening to say the least!

Sunday’s are recovery day. Everyone gets a lie in and drag themselves to the local store to get some hangover food; bacon, eggs, beans, toast and pancakes to name but a few. Sunday’s are also the day we all get to use wifi so everyone caught up with family and friends which always gives a great boost to camp. This Sunday Mark, who works at the local holiday resort kamalame, took some of us out on his boat in the afternoon for some water sports fun. What could be a better cure for a hangover than wake boarding and donuting in the Bahamas with awesome people? So, all in all, a great week 4 at greenforce Bahamas.

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