San Cristobal and
How lovely to see our friends on
Bonaire again. The kids have been anticipating this reunion like Christmas
and were up at 5am looking out to the horizon to see Bonaire.
We hung around the anchorage for a
few days and the kids variously beached, ate, played, visited tortoise sanctury
again, got over excited generally. Easter came early this year, and we had
a 'roast-up' with all the trimmings. Much laughter and loads of stories of
the things the two boats had been doing since we had last spent time together an
unbelievable 5 months previously.
(Sea Lions) lounging about as usual
Up the mast to check aloft gave the
chance to get a great panoramic of the anchorage
Checking out was a disater, as with
most things bureacratic in Ecuador, and our agent, Bolivar, had to give the
immigration man a 'tip' of $60 to get our passports back, as they said we had
left Ecuador on 4-March and had no right to be in Galapagos.
Then it was time to go and we set of
for Isabella minus one Zinnia, but plus one Fin. We planned to head round
the South side of Isla Espanionla to see if we could spot an albatros as we had
been told that the mating season had just started.
Shortly after leaviong at 6am we saw
a manta ray jump clean out of the water and do a somersault, not once, but three
times about 100m from the boat. Rather than just being a glimpse in the
corner of ones eye, we were looking squarely at it. Quite an amazing sight
as these Manta rays are huge, maybe 2 or 3m across from tip to tip, so they make
quite a spash. No chance of getting a photo of that one though.
Boys make a
As we rounded the Eastern end of
Espaniola the boat became as if full of Welsh twitchers, binocular and camnera
at the ready. Wow, what a triumph to finally see an albatros in the
distance. Another tick in the box, and other featherd friends as well.
Boobies (both blue footed and masked), petrels, skipping birds, tropic
But then, as we rounded the corner there was a flock of birds bobbing around
in front of us. We could not believe it. There were 100+ Waved
Albatrosses right in front of us, and we sailed straight through the flock
causing them to lift up and set off in their ungainly fashion by running on the
water, and then lauching themselves int he air, their long narrow wings bending
into the most graveful shapes. For the next couple of hours we sailed
through many flocks of these extraordinary birds. In a life when one is
lucky to see even one albatros we feel our bag is complete.
Run . . . Flap . . . Take off . . .
takes off beside the boat
Cosmo with Albatros in front . .
The coastline scenery was magnificent
and majextic, made slightly more so in the knowledge that we weren't really
meant to be there. The Galapagos parks authrority I am sure woudl not
approve of boats mowing down their precious wildlife