The morning started like always with 7am breakfast consisting of bananas and choc-chip pancakes with blueberry and chocolate syrup. Today there was no pancake challenge as everyone was anticipating the snorkelling day that had been planned. Everyone was ready for the day at 8am for an 8.30 start (Fillipino time). An hour later, we came to a dirt ‘carpark’ and jumped in a man powered (with a pole) dinghy boat where everyone got their feet wet and their sea legs on.
The day boat was named SYMELL. It had seats all the way around, a mattress as a bed and a hammock. Three men were our tour guides, yet it seemed as if none of them did any guiding. At the first stop, we stepped from the boat onto a ladder into tropical warm water. There were an abundance of fish and corals to see. The ocean reminded us of our love of Australian beaches and the ability to swim all along the coast despite the noticeably saltier water.
We later went to an island which was government owned. We went for a short walk along the beach, then jumped straight back onto the boat after collecting some remnants of sea urchins. After the island, we went to another snorkelling spot that was similar to the first one, but as we were bolder we had much more fun. Our water sports for the day were jumping off the end of the boat, where Andrew and Jordan executed a synchronised backflip - which you can find on the Facebook page. One of the guides brought a few starfish from the water that we could touch. They looked plastic and not at all real. At our last stop, where only a few swam it started raining, and so we wrapped towels around ourselves to keep warm and dry, and rowed back in the rain. We treated ourselves to a late lunch in a shopping complex around 3 on the way back to YWAM where we ate burgers, rice, dumplings, and/or fruit and vegetables after snorkelling.
Back at the base showers were the first option for most. Dinner tonight was at 6, and we were celebrating with a Love Feast because it was our last night there along with the Denver DTS team. To celebrate this special evening we ate roast pork (one reared on the farm), which was challenging for some of us. As a vegetarian (Sharni) thankfully there was a separate vegetarian lasagne to eat which both myself and Zoe proceeded to have a second helping of because it was outstanding! After dinner Tone (YWAM DTS student) presented the final video filmed from the Sports fest on Saturday. Then both teams received affirmations and were prayed for approaching the next legs of our journeys. The YWAM crew went above and beyond presenting both teams with our own t-shirts and memorabilia which will be attached to our ‘car chains’ as soon as we get back to Australia.
Today was an amazing experience and a different kind of day.
~ Meg and Sharni
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