21 Jan AM – So Long Sun, Salt water and Snorkeling

Things are winding down here at DBML. As we gear up to take our final exam and began packing (a long and arduous task,) I would like to think back on some of my favorite moments here at the lab. When I first arrived, I was a bit dazed. I went into this trip not even knowing what the lab or our living quarters would look like. Nonetheless, I was excited about this opportunity and when I went to bed that first night I was ready for whatever the next two weeks would bring me. My first snorkel trip happened the following afternoon and I remember feeling nervous and clumsy, bumping into people’s fins and trying my hardest not to touch the rocks (which at the time I believed to be coral.) I was on constant and obsessive lookout for any of the dangerous organisms we discussed, whether it be fire coral or a barracuda (I’d even started to play the Jaws theme song in my head even though sharks aren’t in this part of Jamaica.) It was an east coast approach to Jamaican snorkeling. As time went on, though, I got more comfortable and more adventurous as I snorkeled. I was amazed each time I went out by the beauty of this reef (I’ve even started to take a liking to algae.) My SCUBA training was another part of the trip that I loved. Although I was not able to complete my open water dives due to congestion, I loved perfecting skills in the pool and was able to really start to feel like a marine biologist in training. I look forward to completing my certification this summer. I’m so thankful for this opportunity, being in Jamaica has been an amazing experience and has reinvigorated my passion to do conservation research and protect the Oceans I love. While I’m dreading going back to the cold of New York, I know I’ll be a little warmer this winter thanks to my time spent in Discovery Bay.

Emma_BlueMountain

Last day of Shorts and Blue Mountain Coffee.

-Emma

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