Location: Roseau, Dominica

From the beginning of the day, with a pleasant wake-up to Hall and Oates after our first night-out, the crew on Ocean Star prepared for an island tour of Dominica. After hitting land, we were greeted by our local guides Seacat, Armstrong, and Peter Jr. ( Yes, his name is Seacat from some sort of mistranslation and good-spirited humor.) Right off the bat, we hit the road on a journey to basically eat all of the local seasonal fruits and see some spectacular landmarks that make Dominica the beautiful island that all of us came here to enjoy. One thing to note is that our tour guides were incredibly eccentric, making us feel like family even though we had just met. Driving on the island is quite an experience as we got to witness some outstanding views and truly got to see the country. We basically just stopped on the side of the road, and Seacat would forage some of the great foods that Dominica has to offer. Some of the various snacks on the tour were passionfruit, coconut, almond, cassava bread, breadfruit, sugarcane, lemongrass, bananas, avocado, and chocolate. A personal favorite moment from the day was watching Graydon scale a coconut tree in about a minute with ease. On the nine-hour tour, we also stopped at three watering holes. The first was called Emerald Pool, which was up in the hills and contained crystal cold waters. Plenty of photos were taken with the waterfall and jumping off the rocks. Next, we went to some secluded river rocks where some of us rode the current into some very small uncharted rapids. Don’t worry, we all exited in one piece. The last spot was Trafalgar Falls, which was quite a trek to climb up. The climb up there was slippery, but our faithful leader Armstrong knew exactly where to step, almost like a game of the floor is lava. When we got halfway up, the hot springs of the falls were just steaming.

Further on, we jumped or flipped into the cold waters of the falls and then carefully and slowly climbed down to the springs where we sat for a good half-hour, enjoying the only hot water that we’ve immersed ourselves into in two weeks. The clay on the rocks was high in sulfur, so a few of us made some homemade face masks while the others laughed because we looked like Oompa Loompas. By the end, everyone was beat and ready to head back home to Ocean Star. After dinner was the first quiz for Oceanography which everyone dreaded and was crash studying for before dinner, tomorrow is the 13-mile hike to the boiling lake, which should be… interesting?
P.S Photos courtesy of Peyton

P.P.S To my friends and family, I’m having a great time on the boat, and the people I’ve met are all so funny and helpful. Favorite part of the trip so far: mangos and deck showers.