Thursday, March 14, 2013


So far since being here its been a lot of job training and beach time. On Friday, we went on an Island tour and which began at the University of the Virgin Islands. Geographic Consulting does some work in their green houses , but we also learned a little about the hydroponics, a system to grow plants using live fish, Tilapia, as the plants main source of  Nitrogen. Our second stop was for lunch at a local restaurant where I got to try a local favorite, Roti, I am not exactly sure how to describe it but it was like a giant pita/tortilla filled with curry, potatoes, ground chickpeas and chicken. Once we were all super full,  we hopped back into the car  and continued our tour. We then stopped at another beach that is also know for turtle nesting, but we got there we saw 3 juvenile spotted eagle rays just enjoying the shallow  Caribbean water. Our final spot on the tour was at the furthest eastern point in the US. It was beautiful. We were surrounded by water and had a great view of Buck's Island. At this point it was getting to be late, so we grabbed some groceries and then went home exhausted and ready for bed.

If you look closely, you can see a Spotted Eagle Ray

View of Buck Island from Point Utal
Point Utal, the most eastern point of the US

Point Utal
The next few days were spent on training in the morning and beach in the afternoon. I am amazed at how strong the sun is here because I don’t typically get sunburned, but even dousing myself in sunscreen I still find myself getting sun burned.

We have also spend some time walking through the town of Frederiksted, but its interesting the whole town is virtually closed, everything is boarded up. But rumor is it will become alive when the cruise ships pass by, so I will have to check it out then.

Then on Monday, we began our first turtle patrols. We did two night in a row of half nights just to get a feel for the beach and hopefully see a turtle. However after lots of walking and little sleep, not a single turtle decided to visit us. 

Thursday was our last day and night off as a group, so we went to Christiansted to listen a talk put on by the National Parks Services. It was interesting to learn what the NPS was doing for local school children by bringing them to the Island's beautiful national parks, particularly Buck's Island.

Christiansted, near the fort.

Well tomorrow marks the first night of real patrols, so hopefully a leatherback will decide to come nest!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

First Look

Plane from Puerto Rico to St. Croix
Hello from St. Croix! Boy, was it an adventure to get here. It took over 17 hours, with a 6 hour layover in Charlotte, North Carolina, followed by a delayed flight in San Juan, Puerto Rico. When I finally landed in St. Croix the sun had just set and I was met by my new bosses Jen and Liz as well as John the other new tech. We went straight to one of the local bars for some pizza and Cruzan rum. I was so excited to see that pizza was available. I think it will be fun place to go to this year.

St. Croix from the plane.
After we were substantially full of pizza, we headed to the house. I was surprised to see how large the house was. There was a room for me and the other girl, Molly and then the 3 boys will share the room on the other side of the house. Our kitchen is so long that the owner specifically told us no bowling!

Our neighborhood, if you look carefully you can see the baby horses.

By the time I got all settled in I was so tired, I just crashed. In the morning, John and I took the 10 minute walk down to the local beach. The beach has a bar and a surf shop right on the water and the water an amazing Caribbean blue. I can't wait to go diving and see what is there.

The closest beach to our house.
The local surf shop. 
Around noon, we were picked up and taken to the patrol beach, Sandy Point. Again the water was an amazing color. I was so surprise how soft the sand is. I am going to get in shape really quickly. The rest of the afternoon was spent just relaxing and getting to know the new area, Then in the late afternoon Molly and Justin arrived and shared stories from last turtle season, which only made me more excited to get started seeing turtles.

Don't worry, I still live near cows.
Then this morning we walked down to the local cafe, Polly's at the Pier, to get some iced coffee and use the internet. I have to say I am so happy to be here its so warm beautiful!!!

Polly's is full of art for sale and a view of the ocean.
Sorry, there are not a ton of pictures today but next post I will make sure I have a lot more.