Teaching English!

Trip Start Feb 07, 2006
Trip End Jul 12, 2006

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Flag of Ecuador  ,
Thursday, June 29, 2006

Weīve slowed down our travelling to spend nine days on Santa Cruz, the principle island in Galapagos. We had heard about an English school here run by Chris and Katy, respectively a Canadian and a Brit, and we were happy to volunteer in their school teaching English. Luc and I taught small groups of students ranging from 5 years old to adult. It was fun to meet some local kids and have a different sort of experience than most tourists have on the islands. I have to admit it was a bit difficult to get into the work mode after having virtually no responsibilities for five months!

Galapagos is a great place to have some free time! Just walking around near the water, we have seen a turtle, tonnes of bright red crabs, sleepy sea lions, various sizes of lizards and iguanas, and huge flying pelicans. I love to go down to the water where large groups of awkwardly moving sea lions are sprawled out on one another on the dock. Itīs funny to watch them flop their fat bodies into the water. Once they get there though, are they ever graceful!

On the weekend, a small group of us went biking up in the highlands. We visited several farms where we sampled the plethora of fruits growing on the trees. It was fun to pluck fresh bananas, oranges, grapefruits, papayas and other exotic fruits whose names I donīt even know right off the tree. One tasty one looked like a mini squash, and the orange flesh inside was really sweet! At another farm we shoved long, heavy sticks of sugarcane into a press and enjoyed the sweet, refreshing juice. This was much deserved after way too many uphill stretches!

Several days we have rented snorkeling equipment and have taken advantage of our close proximity to such amazing wildlife. Even on the days when the visibility was less than ideal, we had a great time swimming around. We have been lucky to see many brightly colored fish and a couple of manta rays. On particular day I was lucky enough to see five rays, one of them wider than my arm span! Luc also thinks he MAY have seen a shark! ;)

The wildlife viewing should be even better for the next week. We are about to board a sailboat, the Angelique, for 8 days of sailing around the islands. I am so excited to write about swimming with sea lions!
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