Santa Catalina Day 3

Published: May 16th 2011
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Apparently I was tired (or perhaps it was the Benadryl?). I slept for about 10 hours. Wow. Of course it poured rain last night, but is perfectly clear & sunny & hot this morning. So far the early onset of rainy season isn't bothering me at all. It's working with my schedule. Thanks!

In the morning the bugs are quiet but the birds are on point. There are so many birds up singing & squawking & making all kinds of funny noises. I love the jungle (with the exception of the bugs that bite). I got out of bed & looked out the window only to see two monkeys jumping around in the tree next to our room. Awesome!! We could hear the Howler's off in the trees somewhere & the Green Parrots were going nuts flying around over us. I think I'm actaully going to miss Green Parrots & their noisy little selves.

By now I had managed to wake Geoff up, mostly because of the monkey sighting. So we headed out to check out the island a little this morning before breakfast. We went looking for Tito, the resident Crocodile. He was nowhere to be seen. He even has his own sign with his name on it, next to where he usually sunbathes. Kinda cute. We walked up to a little mirador (viewpoint) that was pretty. It looked back down on the buildings which from that vantage point looked even more like a scene from "Lost." Then we headed back to the kitchen to make some breakfast. We made some rice & ate our hard boiled eggs. Simple & easy. Then we headed back to our room to get packed up & ready for another day of diving.

The boat arrived to pick us up at about 9:30 am. Perfect timing for us. Today we are diving with a couple more people, but still a nice small group. There's us, another couple & our new DM Luis, & a couple of guys who are snorkeling. We got on the boat & headed out to our first dive site.

Dive 1: At Iglesia: The best part of this dive was a Turtle that I saw. He swam by us all in the distance & then turned around & swam ever so beautifully slowly right next to/above me. I couldn't move, I just stared in amazement. They are so graceful & beautiful. But then I turned around & only saw Geoff. We lost our group for a moment. Oops. It happens a lot it seems when the viz is poor. We swam quickly & found them. Geoff said he couldn't pull me away because he saw how much I was loving my "moment" with the Tortuga. We also saw numerous frogfish. They are the funniest looking fish. They look bright yellow or red & look like they are fish shaped pieces of sponge coral. They are so cool.

Our surface interval was back at Isla Coiba. We spent our time looking over the dock at fish & walking along the beach. Not bad at all.

Our second dive: Wahoo Rock: We saw another Seahorse! Yippeee!!! A school of juvenile Cornetfish. Super cool. Otherwise, we just worked our way through the current & enjoyed every moment.
After our dive we got picked up by our boat & headed back to Santa Catalina. The ride home was almost perfectly flat the entire way. It was really difficult to believe we were on the Pacific Ocean it was so ridiculously calm. We passed at least 10 turtles along the way, sunning themselves on the surface, probably because the water was so calm. It was spectacular. As usual.

Back in town we headed to Cabanas Rolo again in search of our room. We ended up in a dorm, still sleeping in twin beds!, with just one other girl from Germany. We promptly showered (so salty! & scratchy) & then made some top ramen to fill up our hungry bellies. There's this older guy (probably in his 60's) who's staying here & is seriously a poster child for what happens to surfers (& maybe potheads) when they get older. He talks like a surfer, all slangy & with that California drawl, but he literally talks soooooo slow & almost always seems semi confused about what he's saying. It is so weird to talk to him. We've tried to ignore him a bit, but he always always wants to talk. Anything he asks you about he promptly follows up with a story that's way better than yours, although it takes him forever to tell you because he talks so slowly. Seriously, entertaining & annoying all in the same moment.

We headed back to the bar across the street for happy hour with a couple of surfer dudes & mr. slow talker. After a couple of beers we went to a little outdoor Fonda for some BBQ chicken & rice & salad, we shared a plate for $3, love those prices. Luis & his wife & son are the owners of the little restaurant, which is attached to the front of their house, & I was talking with them a bit. His son is 3 & he did not stop talking for a second once he got going. It was super cute. After dinner we headed back to the bar for one last beer & then home to bed. We were going to head to Panama City tomorrow but we've decided we can't pass up one more day of diving the Pacific. It could be our last dive in this ocean for quite some time... Sad sad day. I'm sure we'll dive at home but, ugh, the water will be even colder. So, we're staying here one more day. A must do, we've decided. Off to sleep in our dorm room & twin beds.....

Additional photos below
Photos: 11, Displayed: 11


Beware of Tito!Beware of Tito!
Beware of Tito!

Behind our room was a lagoon where Tito, the local crocodile lived. Sadly he didn't make an appearance.
We hated to leave.We hated to leave.
We hated to leave.

But at least we get to go diving again today.

A map of Santa Catalina that had all the hotels, dive shops and most importantly the bars. This was painted on the wall of the bar across the street from us, our little hangout.

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