Location: Portsmouth, Dominica

Today started with a normal wake up time of 7:00 for the first time in a few days, allowing for the crew to “sleep in” before feasting on the invigorating meal of crepes provided by our French culture expert and Chef of the day, Josh, with the assistance of his sous chef Tommy. After this delicious meal, we sprung right into action to quickly pack our backpacks before being picked up by our guide for the day, Cobra. We all piled into his beautifully painted wooden dinghy. We motored to the mouth of the Indian River, the very same river that held Calypso’s hut in the second Pirates Of the Caribbean movie. As we entered the river, the boats’ motors had to be cut due to conservation laws. You can only paddle up the river. As we began a slow, scenic paddle up the river, our guide pointed out a number of local flora and fauna that comprised this beautiful swamp meets jungle landscape. The river is quite shallow and relies mainly on intrusion from the ocean and rain for its depth, so as we ventured upstream, we tested the salinity content of the river to see the effect of moving from ocean to brackish to eventually freshwater as well as the ever-present rain of Dominica. Upon reaching the furthest point upriver one can paddle before being beached, we disembarked from the small rowboats and ventured into a little restaurant in the middle of the jungle. After a brief coffee and juice break, we were ready to head back downstream. However, that’s when the rain began. The rain in Dominica is a particular thing, it starts up in a torrent that back home would end in a few moments, but here it just keeps going…. and going…. and going. After about an hour of huddling beneath the spacious roof of the restaurant and several more juices, the rain slowed into just your average rainfall, and we decided we better take our chances and began the row back down the river. After this torrent of rain, which is a daily occurrence on Dominica, we could clearly see the sediments drifting into the river stemming from its subsidiaries, which obviously prompted another oceanography themed conversation of freshwater runoff. Arriving back to O-Star from our river adventure, we had a brief but informative Oceanography class before being given some study time to work on our essays. Our work was soon rewarded by a delicious dinner and the first of the videos to begin our training for the PADI rescue diver certification.
Until next time, This is Peter and the O-Star Crew checking out!
Miss you, Stu and Clara!