Monday, July 25, 2011

24/07/11 All rain but no water at Cap T!

Even though the tropical rain has been falling every few days on Mahe Island, the water shortage reached Cap Ternay GVI camp this week. The reservoir that feeds into the base has dried up over the 7 month period of drought earlier this year in the Seychelles. Despite the promise of running water every night from 6-8, so far we’ve been showering in the sea and running around filling any bucket we can find when the water tanker turns up in the middle of the day to give us fresh water. Although it’s been a bit of a shock to the system of the base, in some ways it’s been great roughing it, and we’ve learnt that showering in the sea actually works surprising well- although we do wonder how long this enthusiasm will last!

Friday night’s pirate party, all would agree, was a huge success. We had food to feed a whole ship and plenty of rum to keep the crew happy. We celebrated the end of the working week well into the night outside as the rain cleared up. It was a great way to start the weekend before we all slowly ambled up the hill to get the bus to Victoria or Beau Vallon the next morning.

Half of the base went off to the night dive in Beau Vallon on Saturday after a day of relaxing on the beach and checking emails. We headed off to the Underwater Centre on the beach front in plenty of time to get our kit set up and forms filled in. Then we all piled into the boat at 6.30, just as the sun was setting over the horizon. The colour of the sky was absolutely phenomenal and got everyone in the mood to experience the reef by night. The dive site is called Aquarium, and is a figure of eight route past two huge coral formations. For many of the volunteers, it was their first time diving at night and part of the experience was guiding you and your dive buddy through the dive with bright underwater torches. However, the big treat came for everyone, volunteers and staff members alike, when we all saw a huge 2m brown marble ray coming up from resting on the sand. It was an absolutely incredible sighting for the night, along with the usual abundance of lobsters and sleeping soldierfish. Surfacing from the dive we found ourselves under a blanket of stars in a stunningly clear night sky. After returning to shore we all headed down the beach to have a huge braai with the GVI lot instigated by Adam, one of the interns working in Beau Vallon, where we had a massive feast under the stars before heading home.

Today is Whale Shark Wednesday, as decided by Joe. The themes this week have been a real success, with Ro really going all out for yesterday’s theme much to Brian’s surprise. The anticipation is therefore really high that we might spot a whale shark on the plankton pull today. In the afternoon we’ll be off for our second turtle walk and after last week sightings, there’s a lot of faith that this day will be filled with megafauna and will be a very successful and exciting day!