It is cold. And we are on the equator. Who would have thought? The temperature is completely driven by the currents and the sun and right now there is a cold current passing through. Oh, the sun. It is just a wee but strong. During mid day there is a palpable pressure from above. The ground is black lava rock in many places; you can’t escape. Like any good convection oven it cooks from all sides. We are too white!
Today we were chased by a sea lion. This one:
It was lying in the middle of a raised walkway and felt like fucking with us instead of letting us pass. Luckily, a Japanese tourist needing to get his family through the same blockade applied an ancient technique of making a lot of noise and running away so she chased him. That made me feel like less of a man. But, I got to do some small talk with them in Japanese which made up for it.
There is basically no food in the stores here – not really anything to make the sort of lunch I would consume. However, there is albacore tuna. Maybe it’s because the world sends its leftovers here or they really, really like it.
Also mayonnaise. The same store had gallon jugs of mayonnaise. But the technological advancement of tuna salad has not arrived. Someone I spoke with became muddled at the suggestion of a fish sandwich.
What we got instead was queso fresco on a buttered roll. Not so bad! Even better was the tour – probably the best of the trip thus far. An area off Isabella island was once wormed through with lava tunnels formed when the two nearby volcanoes spewed their load.
Tectonic shifts and time have left mere arches and crevices which form excellent habitats for many marine animals and 500 year old candelabra cacti. Blue footed boobies nest with their young above (it is mating season) while the waters teem with colorful fish, sharks, and sea turtles. Our guide flushed a shiver of 8 sharks out of a cave right into us. Friendly sharks. Sea turtles can live 200 years and grow to be longer than a person is tall. I swam with some today, close enough to touch.
Here is a scary clown: