After about 2 hours at CDRS, Carolina turned us loose in Puerto Ayora to wander about for a couple of hours. We strolled down the main street and several side streets, looking in store windows and checking out restaurants and hotels. Zell found a store selling Panama hats and tried on several. He took a photo of this mural on the side of a restaurant (below). Translation: Freeing breeding female and young lobsters will allow us to continue fishing in the future.
We stopped to enjoy the open-air fish market, located on the side of the main road and backing up to Academy Bay. Talk about fresh fish—directly from the fishing boats to the market for cleaning, gutting, whatever. We had no interest in buying any fish (although if we were back home, I’d have been all over it). But it was great fun to watch the wildlife hanging out, begging, hoping for scraps. The Galápagos Sea Lions (right) were the most insistent customers, insinuating themselves right up the counters. The Brown Pelicans waited a bit more patiently (below). In general, although the workers just ignored them. But they gave us some laughs.
And look at the lovely pattern of one of the Brown Pelicans waiting, hoping, for an easy meal. It’s easy to miss how gorgeous their feathers are. (Click on the photo to get a larger and more lovely view.)
The morning was really hot and humid, with no breeze; and I didn’t feel much like walking around aimlessly. (Even on a good day, I’m not much of a shopper.) Clearly, more than 20 years of living in Colorado, with its dry climate, had made me susceptible to high humidities. (In our dry climate, perspiration actually works as it should—it evaporates and cools you. But in really humid air, nothing evaporates and nothing cools you. At least me…) I couldn’t shake my feeling of light-headedness, so we headed for the grocery store for some refreshments—ice cold Coke and some peanut M&Ms. Yum! When paying, we at first thought the cashier had given us too little change. But the fellow behind us pointed out that 2 of the coins in Zell’s palm were $1 coins—oops! Even though these were U.S. coins, the dollar coins are not popular in the U.S.; so we didn’t even think of that possibility. We offered our apologies (good thing I know how to apologize nicely in Spanish!) and we headed off. So cash customers—be forewarned!
We plunked ourselves down at the dock to eat our snacks and await the rest of the group—and the panga—in the shade. And we got to watch the various boats moored in lovely Academy Bay. On our visit in 2009, we had seen many, many Blue-footed Boobies doing their “spear” diving from high above the waters here. But this year, we saw nary a one here. Hmmm…
After lunch, we headed to Tortuga Bay. Click here to read about that.