We have a public holiday on Monday (Columbus Day) - this is the nearest to half term that we get. The week after that is Mid Term Exams, grading and parents afternoon. School has had ups and downs this week so I'm glad to be able to relax a bit more this weekend.
Today we joined some other volunteers to do a major trail from Sliding Rock to Fagatale Bay. Sliding Rock is a coastal area with smooth rocks (as opposed to vicious volcanic rocky coastline). Another volunteer said that it is basalt which had been formed by volcanic activity underwater - there are geography and science exemplars all over this island! Amazing blue sea, white rollers coming in and crashing on the black rock. We walked along the beach hunting for a trail that we had heard about. Fagatale Bay is a national nature reserve so is meant to have some trails, if you can find them... I do have a map but the trails and paths marked on it are very out of date, they don't bear much relation to what is on the ground. We found a trail and were rewarded with a good path following the coast through the jungle, climbing up steeply to go along the rim of an ancient volcano. It was an exhausting climb, very hot and humid - we saw some black lizards 5 inches long, some hermit crabs about 4 inches long, and a massive toad which posed for the cameras. We could see the beach that we were aiming for - it was great to climb down the steep slope and get down on the sand. We went to this beach on orientation when the tide was high and there was loads of tree debris in the waves, but this time it was much calmer and a good swim in medium waves. A bit of snorkel opportunity with tiny electric blue fish and bigger stripy jobs. It was great to catch up with the other volunteers who we had not talked to since orientation. It was tricky with the buses today as there was a cruise ship in so the buses were busy making a lot of dosh ferrying them around on island tours and so not so many were available for everyday dollar rides. Kate