Chillin’ and Sunburnin’ : Day 6

Hola from Costa Rica! It has been quite an adventure these past few days in Junquillal. I was a little weary about waking up at 3 a.m. to go do night patrol on Junquillal’s beach. The 3 a.m. patrol quickly filled with excitement as we found a Lora, also known as an Olive Ridley, sea turtle nest. We got the opportunity to reach in and grab the eggs from the nest. I was able to pull out 100 of the 152 overall eggs. It was quite interesting because unlike chicken eggs, sea turtle eggs are very squishy and quite flexible. I was afraid I was going to squish them too hard while pulling them out of the nest! We finished walking the North end of the beach and then went to the hatchery to put the eggs into a protected nest.

The rest of the day was spent helping Verdiazul fix the hatchery baskets. It was fun to try and figure out how to sew the basket holes up with a curved needle and fishing thread. At 6 p.m. we had a nice meal of spaghetti, some veggies, and a little bit of meat on top. I think we were all happy to have some pasta! Group 3 headed out for night patrol at 7. There were no sea turtles or nest sightings. It did help my step count go up; I ended the day with 32,000 steps.

This morning the group headed down for a light breakfast and headed out for a few hours of beach clean up. We were divided into groups and we picked up recyclables and trash that we found on the beach. I started feeling defeated while picking up plastic because the amount that we were able to pick up seemed minuscule compared to all of it that was out there. At one point I thought it would have just been easier to shovel up patches of the sand because of the amount of small pieces of plastic mixed in. It really put in to perspective just how much plastic, glass, and trash washes up on to the shores and the need to reduce our use of these products.

After lunch we headed out to Playa Blanca for a day in the sand! The waves here are a lot more rough then the waves in Texas or even Florida. It was funny when our group got flipped over on the sand because the wave hit us faster than we expected. I also enjoyed walking down the beach and finding the most beautifully colored and swirly sea shells. I will be missing the beaches when we head back on Tuesday to San Jose.

Well I’ve got to run to finish these chips and guacamole!

Sunburned back of CALUE Service Break participant

PSA: Wear your sunscreen kids!

-Alyssa Weaver-