Galapagos I suppose.
Last week my group went to the Galapagos Islands. The Galapagos are a group of 13 volcanic islands approximately 500 miles off the coast of Ecuador. They are famous not only for their beauty, diverse and unique ecosystems, and giant tortoises, but they are also the place where Darwin researched and constructed a lot of his ideas on evolution (eventually published under the book The Origin of the Species.)
It was a pretty fast trip. Four days and three nights (2 on the island of Santa Cruz, and 1 on Isabella.) The first day we traveled (two plane rides, two bus rides, and a ferry) and we arrived at our hotel let me tell you what... I was really surprised. The place was soo nice! For our lunch they brought out these fish steaks and you would have thought we were in a five-star restaurant or something. I was almost uncomfortable with the quality of it all. That afternoon we hiked across part of the island to see the Grietas which is this series of canyons that are partially filled with amazingly clear water. At one point you can rock climb up one of the walls and cliff jump from the top (about 45 feet). It was pretty scary actually, and I afterwards I felt like someone had spanked me really well, but it was so cool! Here's a pretty sweet picture my friend snagged:
Then in the afternoon I got to go snorkeling for the first time! I'm not sure I can describe how incredible it was. At first I followed around this sting ray for a while. Then an 8ft sea lion came and swam around us (which was a little scary actually), and I was able to swim with a school of surgeonfish. The most amazing moment came when my friend called me over and we were able to swim with a sea turtle. The thing was really big and had a kind of nobility to him. Something about the graceful way that old creature moved through the water just spoke to me. I just had to keep thanking and praising God while swimming with that guy. It was so cool! After snorkeling we were all pretty beat and headed back to the hotel for a chill night and a beautiful sunset. During the trip I just kept asking, "I get to do this?" The Lord blesses me abundantly, unfairly, so generously.
Coming back from the Galapagos, it was a little hard to get back in the swing of things academically (sometimes I forget, or at least want to forget, that I'm a student still). Then to make it worse this week I started becoming sick, especially for the last 3 or so days. Chills, hot flashes, headaches, loss of quality sleep, loss of appetite, coughing, eyes that hurt when I move them. Its been a crazy ride! Kinda fun in some ways, and God has been faithful in providing everything that I need, and this morning I feel a decent bit better, I think I'll even try to teach today.