September/October Week 4

Week 4: Anne, Charlotte and Jamie

It’s been a hectic week again, but it’s been incredible as we expected!

Our weekend was jam packed with diving starting with a bumpy ride to Manta Reef where we were fortunate enough to see a Grey Reef Shark and the most enormous Honeycomb Moray Eels that we have ever seen! It was a beautiful dive and made up for the 5am start! This was followed by two more dives on Sunday at XTC and Eel Alley where we spotted a sea apple, a turtle, massive potato bass, a marbled stingray, paper fish, dragon eels – the list goes on!

We also got to teach our first swimming lessons on Saturday. We met the children at the pool and assisted them with their beginners and intermediate skills. It was great to see how much they really enjoy spending time in the water and progressing as the lessons went on!

This week we planned to spend every day painting and teaching between Paindane and Guinjata schools. We started painting at Paindane and somehow managed to put together murals of some of Mozambique’s national holidays which, despite the frustration and shouting, ended up looking really good! Anne put together a wonderful display for Women’s Day, Jamie drew a very impressive dove for Peace Day and Charlotte painted a picture for Children’s Day which coincidentally looked like a child’s drawing. We also started our teaching on ecotourism with the children at Paindane which was a lot of fun!

Without much warning, we soon found out that this week involved an election and Teachers Day; another public holiday, which cut our week short resulting in a day at Paindane collecting fisheries data. It’s safe to say this was probably our toughest day here so far with a mixture of a very hot day along with over 200 fish being brought on. Sadly this included a juvenile scalloped hammerhead shark which we were all very devastated about. However, we managed to collect a great amount of data from the fishermen, which resulted in a nice late night for us as we attempted to identify every species.

We have had a lot of fun this week including our ocean safari which involved some high quality snorkeling around Coral Gardens, several pods of dolphins, a turtle, lots of whales and even some flying fish! We had a great morning with a memorable afternoon of switching from one car with a broken clutch to another car with no battery left, mixed in with some delicious cake from Tofo and ABBA Gold on repeat!

We only have one more week left in this beautiful and welcoming place and it’s safe to say that none of us are ready to leave. We’re looking forward to making the most of our last few days here and fingers crossed we get some wonderful sightings on our last few dives!

The fourth week of our September/October program has somehow come to an end, and just like Anne, Charlotte and Jamie aren’t ready to leave – we aren’t quite ready to say goodbye to them either. The past four weeks have been great, and we’re hoping the final week will live up to the previous ones! Our fourth week has been hectic and involved a lot of logistics not going our way, but as always our little trio has made the most of it – they’ve been all smiles, laughter, and excellent car-singing. Now, who cares about being stuck with a dropped clutch when you’ve got three wonderful volunteers singing in the backseat?!

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