The Bearly-Malinowski's Hit The Road Again travel blog

On the deck of the Nemo II

Land Iguana chews on a cactus pear

Sea Turtle waiting for night to lay eggs

Isla Bartolome

The feet of the Blue-Footed Booby

On the beach at Espanola

Stingray glides near shore

Frigate bird turns on the charm

Picking up the mail at Post Office Bay

Jason and Kim chilling

Baby sea lion amuses the kids

Ready for scuba diving

Cayman is trapped

Penguins hanging out on some volcanic rock

WOW! Our long-awaited cruise in the Galapagos Islands was everything we had hoped and more. We had been reading about Charles Darwin--as this year is the 200th anniversary of his birth. We have been learning a bit about 'natural selection' Jason even having read THE ENTIRE "Origin of Species" and "Voyage of the Beagle", and I read parts.

We cruised with doctors and more doctors on 2-3 week vacation trips from Australia, bankers from France and Germany--for the most part they were the people with money but no time--although all were fun and engaging. Our vessel, the Nemo II, was a wonderful and comfortable catamaran. Our Naturalist guide was fascinating and experienced--his Mother lives in Tiburon--where he says he can't afford to buy a coke in a bar!

We swam with sealions. And I mean we swam with them so close we could peer into eachothers' eyes. Ditto with sea turtles. We all laughed about the hours we spent scouring beaches in the dead of night in Panama and Costa Rica during our sabbatical in 2005, just hoping to catch a glimpse of one sea turtle. Here, practically daily we saw 50, floating offshore waiting to lay eggs at night, swimming along the reef, chewing kelp, swimming along with us as we were scuba-diving. It was magical. It is clear that fear of humans is, (as noted by Darwin)truly learned and not instinctive. The lesson in geology was also valuable. The Galapagos looked like no other place I've ever seen. Young, black, volcanic.

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