Day ten. The last full day of the trip, and after a week and a half of dealing with us, going full bore at all hours, and trying to corral Aaron and Scott, Greg may be glad to be near the end; the rest of us definitely feel otherwise. Today we started out at Rabida Island on a red sand beach with brown pelicans, then moved on to two snorkels with sharks, an octopus, and tons of other critters whose names I’m incapable of remembering. A three hour motor to North Seymour island was interrupted by the ship’s horn, and when we emerged from lunch to see what was going on two blue whales surfaced off the bow. I’ve always wanted to see one, so when Greg mentioned that there wasn’t time today for whalewatching I quickly made it clear that anything in the schedule could be dropped if it meant more time with whales. It was an easy negotiation, and we got thirty minutes with the giant beasts in exchange for only a kayak on North Seymour; my bargaining skills rule.
When we did finally arrive on North Seymour we jumped in the water for a snorkel – Greg began it with a rare admission: “Why are we going into open ocean in rough seas with almost no visibility? Well, that’s ’cause we’re crazy.” It wasn’t a highlight snorkel (remember, we saw a whale shark and manta ray earlier on the trip) but wasn’t too bad. The last landing of the trip was on North Seymour to see the blue-footed boobies and frigate birds. About halfway through the walk Greg decided not to give any further nature information and just let us enjoy the animals, and the last hour on land was pretty nice. Dinner was a surprise with lobster tails being served, and Elvis finally cracked a smile when he brought out a five pound mallet to help Aaron chisel through some stubborn desert pastry. I’m writing this as everyone is gathered in the lounge; it’s gonna be sad to see everyone head home in the morning.