Josh's South American adventure travel blog

This time of the year, the Galapagos are under a blanket of...

Relaxing, tropical style, in the glow of a Galapagos sunset.

We arrived at San Cristóbal, the island I flew into on the 17th. This is where the eight-day cruise ended for 12 of the passengers, where we'd pick up new passengers and where I decided to rent a wet suit for the remainder of the trip! Raoul and I went to the Interpretation Center with the group to get a short history lesson of the islands. There are some wacky stories about people living in the middle of the Pacific Ocean with nothing but the wildlife to keep them company!

Raoul and I said goodbye to our new friends, and made our way, snorkeling gear in hand, to a beach we heard had good things to see. The beach faced the open sea, no bay, no shelter, and the water was very, very cold. My left hip actually started to cramp up, so we made our way back. On the way, I spotted something that didn't belong there, picked it up and examined it when we got to the beach. It was half a broomstick with a long metal hook on one end. I put it in our gear bag and thought to give it to the people on our boat.

We returned to town and I went directly to a dive shop to rent a wet suit. As I tried it on, the guy in the shop saw the metal hook. I explained I found it and didn't want the hook to hurt a person or animal. He told me the device was used to pluck octopus out of their holes, and it was illegal for anyone without a license to carry one. He offered to take it off me. Raoul and I then had time for a quick cup of Galapagos-grown coffee before heading back to the boat for lunch and to meet the new passengers.

Raoul and I shared a cabin below deck. When the passengers changed, we moved into one of the two cabins on the main deck. Not only did it have a window that opened, it didn't smell like diesel fuel. Among the new passengers was a family of five from Spain; parents and three grown children. The parents and a daughter moved into the second main deck room, which slept three. The two main deck cabins shared a bathroom, and when the mother learned that two "strangers" were in the other cabin and she'd have to share the bathroom, she threw a fit. It wasn't exactly directed at Raoul and I, but at the crew for not organizing the rooms they way she wanted.

The guide asked us if we'd change, in the name of being good sports, and I politely said no, we had to put up with the crappy room below for four days, now we wanted a nice one. He let it go, he knew about the rooms below. However, after lunch, we both decided to be nice people and offered our room to the remaining children, and we moved back into a smelly below deck room.

A wonderful sunset started us on Part 2 of the cruise.PHOTOS of sunset and of me.

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