Taking the Bull By the Mouths

February 7-9, 2008
Days 862-864

Picture of Bocas.

A restaurant at Bocas del Toro.

I arrived near the Costa Rican border to the archipelago of Bocas del Toro before dawn. I took a quick boat taxi from the mainland to Colon Island, where I based myself for the weekend. I was amazed when I looked into the sky and saw the Southern Cross, which I hadn't seen in months and didn't realize could even be seen this far north. The island culture was laid back and the beaches were nice, but the place was filled with the most annoying type of tourist: The loud ones, the ones who think they invented travel by the simple fact that they've managed to set foot on foreign soil.

After a day of getting situated, I went scuba diving with a couple of Dutch girls named Sybrenne and Tara. They were a psychologist and a psychiatrist respectively, so I tried not to tell them anything incriminating. After watching the jumping dolphins in a tranquil bay, we submerged ourselves and saw lots of colorful coral, a few schools of fish, several lobsters, a few eels, and one stingray. Between dives, we went to a small island with one restaurant where the first item on the menu was lobster for $15. It saddened me that the creatures I was just admiring in their natural habitat were being served for lunch, but luckily I brought my own PB&J, one of those delicacies not available in places with fewer tourists. Another great thing about the archipelago was that the water was so warm, it was like being in a bathtub. Unlike Colombia, I could stay in the ocean for hours without getting cold.

The photo album for this entry is here.

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