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Friday, August 9, 2013

A peak on Amelia's last week at the childcare project in Playa

GVI Live! August 2013, Amelia

As my trip is winding down I wanted to email and tell you guys about my last few days here.  I'm currently sitting on the beautiful beach of Akumal. I cannot get over the water here. It is unbelievably clear and has an abundance of fish, turtles, and stingrays. The fish are completely harmless as are the turtles but one of the stingrays got a little too close for comfort!! It is so amazing to snorkel in their living environment because I feel as though I am a part of it even if it is only for a few minutes. The turtles are so calm and just eat the plankton and grass at the bottom of the ocean but the fish get a little closer and are seemingly friendly. On accident I swam out a little too far and ended up in the middle of the ocean with nothing around me except water. That moderately freaked me out but I just swam towards shore and thankfully found my way back. On the trip back I encountered a larger fish about 40 centimetres long. That was a little nerve racking but it kept to itself and I kept to myself. The stingrays however will get a little too close and swim really close to you but once you splash a little they get kind of scared and swim a little farther. It is so beautiful to see small fish attached to them. It was amazing too because I saw the same thing happening with the turtles. I wonder why they do that but I am going to look it up when I get home. 
You guys would have laughed at the obnoxiously large hat I bought to protect my face and neck from the sun. I got it for 40 pesos so I am not complaining but I needed it since I got a really awful sunburn yesterday while snorkelling with the whale sharks. That is a whole story in itself!! It was completely amazing to see that large of sea creatures-- largest of them all! There were quite a lot of them but they did not bother swimmers and were even calmer than the turtles here in Akumal. The only problem I had with my adventure was I got extremely seasick but I didn't let it ruin my time and I continued to snorkel and swim. One thing so cool about going so far out in the ocean was seeing manta ray stingrays about 100 centimetres in diameter. They were huge!!!!! It was so cool but a little taunting to be swimming so close. Following the sharks, giant stingrays, and large amounts of throw up we had a beautiful lunch at Isla Mujeres consisting of ceviche. After that we trekked back to Playa and I had a nice nap.

I am very sad to return home since I feel like there is so much more to be done and so much more to explore. The people in the town are so nice and especially the kids at the Ludoteca. Being it was my last week the kids and the women who work at the Ludoteca made a beautiful going away ceremony for the volunteers leaving. The kids made bulletins for us with little notes attached from all of the kids, it was so amazing and showed us how much they really appreciated our work there. After that we had an array of traditional Mexican food, home-made from the Ludotecarian's and very delicious cake. Following the feast, we formed a giant circle and the kids made their final goodbyes to the group. I am so sad to leave and I hope to be able to have another experience like this.
See you all soon!!

XOXO, Amelia