Location: Pigeon Island, Guadeloupe
The day was started with an early breakfast and quick clean up in Guadeloupe, as we were all anxious to dive the Jacques Cousteau reef. Jacques Cousteau popularized scuba diving and dedicated his life to helping to better our reefs and keep our marine organisms healthy and alive. He is remembered for the red beanie he not only wore on land but also dived with and claimed this reef to be his favorite. After watching a documentary on Jacques Cousteau on deck last night, we were all super pumped to dive and found that it exceeded all expectations. Surrounded by beautifully colored coral with crystal clear visibility, we swam among many fish and took pictures with the memorial statue of Jacques Cousteau located near the reef. The strong current allowed us to put our hands behind our heads and enjoy the underwater scenery of Jacques Cousteau as it pushed us along the reef. After the first dive, everyone was eager to go again, so we took a short break to have a scheduling meeting, then geared up and did a second dive to not only enjoy the beauty of the reef one more time but to collect data for our oceanography research projects. With our bellies growling from the morning’s activities, we ate a refreshing lunch of soup and salad. During lunch, Noah and Matty’s fishing line appeared to be getting some action, but they soon discovered the line was caught on the anchor chain with the world’s largest barracuda hooked at the end. Being the brave man that he is, Noah quickly, but gracefully dove into the water to untangle the line and chain, so the barracuda could be brought to the surface for all of us to look at. Unfortunately, we were told barracuda do not make the best-tasting fish, so we cut it free, but Noah and Matty were left with their pride in catching such a monstrous fish. To keep the excitement and adventure going, some of us decided to go explore the lands of Guadeloupe, while some opted to stay behind and relax on the boat. Onshore we walked to a market where coffee supplies were replenished, and plenty of chocolate and ice cream was bought to fulfill the sweet tooth we all seem to have. Then we made our way back to the beach that had plenty of places to buy sandwiches, souvenirs, and Jacques Cousteau tank tops. Upon returning to the boat, we had a bit of time to relax and prepare for our midnight passage to Antigua. We enjoyed a delicious dinner of grilled cheeseburgers and pasta salad prepared for us by our chefs Shea and Mollie and ended the day with an Oceanography class. Another great day was had by all here on Ocean Star, and the crew is looking forward to the adventures Antigua has in store for us!