so, i successfully made it to eleuthera and back, guys. overall, the trip was amazing, with just one annoyance (which unfortunately persisted the entire week). i posted two albums on facebook with pictures, and since most of the people who read my blog are also my friends on facebook, that should suffice, though i may post a few select photos here.
i don't really have a ton of time on my hands right now, so i'll keep it short. we pretty much went snorkeling all day every day for 7 days. there was one day when we were only in the water for an hour or so because it started lightning (which unfortunately was the day we went to see the sea turtles), and after that it was raining like crazy. the weather vastly improved the next day, though.
there were a few structured lab activities that the students had to do while we were there, but being the TA, i basically just got to snorkel around and enjoy myself. which was great.
believe it or not, there was one student in the class who paid the $100 a day for room and board plus airfare to go on this trip, and she couldn't even snorkel. she says that she swims great (which i doubt, considering just how uncomfortable she was in the water - she spent the day we went to the fire coral reef hanging onto the life raft attached to the boat). overall, she was generally obnoxious, and i'm incredibly glad to be away from her for a little while. also, she couldn't ride a bike. we were supposed to ride bikes over to one of the reefs (it was only a couple of miles away - about a 15 minute bike ride), and we had to take a van because she refused to get on a bike. she said it's been something like 10 years since she's ridden a bike, but she wouldn't even make an attempt. and she didn't listen. we had to tell her to do something at least three times before she would do anything, and it was a constant battle to get her in the water. so she pretty much paid $1300 to be hot and get eaten alive by no see-ums. and she complained the entire time. everyone else was having a great time and seeing all sorts of amazing fish and corals (nassau groupers, spotted moray eels, barracudas, scrawled filefish, all sorts of damselfish, parrotfish, wrasses, four different species of sea urchin, etc, etc), but this girl sort of made it a point to make everyone else miserable. which sucked. eventually, dr. v. and i just started ignoring her. i feel really sorry for the two girls who had to work in a group with her on the lab projects because she was absolutely no help - not even when what they were doing required very little snorkeling and was only in about two feet of water.
oh, and when i was snorkeling with one of the girls in the class, we got completely surrounded by 6 barracudas. that was a bit unnerving. they weren't huge, but they were close, and they were everywhere.
we only saw one shark, and it was before everyone was in the water, so no one really got a good look at it. one of the guys in the class hopped in with his mask on and scared it away before we could see what kind of shark it was. we also saw two spotted eagle rays that day, which was cool.
so, yeah, it was a pretty amazing trip, and i came back kind of tan even though i used up an entire bottle of sunscreen while we were there (i actually had to borrow sunscreen for the last day).
ok, back to work. check out my photos on facebook, and if you aren't on facebook, leave a comment, and i'll post a few on here when i get a chance.