Day 11

I arrived safely at the intern house! But alas, the internet is down so I don’t know how long it will be before I actually get a chance to post this. We packed up everything at the beach house this morning, and I called Subway Watersports to let them know that I would be at the airport at 12:00 noon. The lady on the other end couldn’t hear me and so I was skeptical as to whether I had actually gotten the message across or not.

We said our goodbyes at the airport, Mom and I busting into tears. We can be a very emotional lot, and curse my genes for giving me that tendency to start shedding tears without notice when something makes me too happy or too sad. Goodbyes before traveling are always this way, because they are the abrupt gate between my comfort zone and the great unknown. Normally these things happen before I even leave Denver, and so it is easy to leave it all behind and jump head first into unknown territory. Bringing the comfort and familiarity of my family to a strange place though, and then having them suddenly leave me entirely on my own in a place I didn’t know was an entirely new experience. So I stood there at the airport with my bag and waited.

Noon rolled around and still no one.

It’s not a very big airport so I kept walking back and forth between the arrivals and the main entrance. Twenty minutes later and still no one. I walked around to find a phone to call Subway and see if they were actually sending someone to get me and ended up walking outside instead, just to see if perhaps someone was just waiting in a subway vehicle, and there is was, a truck with Subway Watersports painted on the side driving around the corner. I waved and the guy driving stopped to help me with my luggage after apologizing for being late. Apparently Kim had been planning on picking me up and then last minute had to send Darren instead. Darren is a super cool guy from Britain, who is an instructor at the shop and has nearly 1000 dives logged.

He brought me back to the house where I was introduced to Christina, a girl from Germany who’s been here for two weeks; Sheila, a girl from North Dakota who arrived the day previous; and Andrew, a guy from Canada who’s been here for six weeks. All super friendly people who made me feel like family from the onset. Apparently it was everyone’s one day off for the week and so they all wanted to go shopping in West End. We all hopped back into the Subway truck and made our way back in the direction I had come from. We had lunch, did some shopping, and before too long, Darren, who had been joking that he was in charge of baby-sitting us, got a call to pick up another intern. So we headed back to the airport to fetch Remy, a guy from California.

The evening was spent grocery shopping and cooking a communal dinner of spaghetti and homemade sauce. I thought it turned out fantastic but I may have overestimated everyone’s tolerance for spice because I do believe that everyone was in tears from the veggie sauce I made. Oops.

Now a bit about the house: to call it “rustic” might be a bit like calling a frat house a palace, true in a certain sense but definitely leaving out some major details. I don’t even know how to describe this place. I mean it definitely has its charm, because the people here make it what it is and they are all fantastic (from what I can tell so far, anyway). It’s a large old wooden beach house that probably hasn’t had any work done to it since it was built. In fact, I heard that there was a fairly major hurricane that destroyed this island nine years ago so I am pretty sure we are living in the wreckage of what is left of the house. The kitchen houses a small collection of odds and ends in terms of kitchenware, and it’s a good thing we’re in the tropics where spaces between the boards in the walls don’t really matter.

No, even at that this place sounds fairly nice. The best description would be to say that some of the places I stayed at in Ghana were nicer.

The best part though is the little orange cat who lives here. She doesn’t belong to anyone, and never did, but apparently people here have been feeding her for so long that she is just a permanent resident now. And it is funny that she just found her way here because now she is mostly just an indoor cat, even though she has the freedom to come and go as she pleases. Something I learned today is that she likes potato chips! I’ve never seen a cat eat a potato chip before. It’s also quite lovely to have her around because she eats the cockroaches. There is also a monkey who lives next door. Every time we drive up or down the road we have to slow down and look up the hill to see where the monkey is. Usually he is sleeping in his hammock.

One last thing, I have to dispel the rumor I was led to believe about all the disasters that have happened at Subway. There was a car accident yes, but no one died. What happened was that Darren and Andrew were driving the subway vehicle and were hit by a drunk driver. There was also a motorcycle behind them, and the guy broke his elbow, but apart from that no one was hurt. The story with the owner Patrick though… That’s a bit scary.