Like so many blogs, I hope this entry reminds me of the the little things I may forget about our journey afterwards. Except I find myself scrolling through Brooklyn 99’s programme list – instead of writing. I finished watching it. Which was my favourite season? Probably Season 5. What to do now? I could watch it again, I guess. I might have missed the small things.
We’ve rented a pick-up truck too this half-term week. They’re all the rage on this island. They are the ultimate dive truck. Not to be confused with a car rental company here called The Ultimate Dive Truck. Those guys even have showers on their trucks.
February half-term has not only kicked in, it’s almost over. Thursday tomorrow. This week last year, we spent half-term with Lu having her nails done in a nail salon in Bridgetown. Now she’s doing an advanced free-diving course. Times have changed. Phew. Meanwhile, Delph had almost started diving. Now, she’s 150+ dives in – during a pandemic. We’ve been lucky that diving had been one thing you can still do in a lockdown – from Questie.
Up until now, almost all our diving has been from the boat. Shore diving’s been sketchy. All the sand and gravel; bringing it back on board to wash out from our gear. It hasn’t inspired us to dive much from the shore.
Pick-up trucks though. Do everything from the flatbed. Get changed, sort your gear out. A revelation! We borrowed one for the week – and it’s easily the best rental car experience we’ve had. Not too expensive either, since this vehicle is the standard rental car here.
It’s also the first time we’ve borrowed a vehicle in six months. Until now, we’ve caught lifts to the big supermarket with Patrice instead. A lot of things are in walking distance. So busy with school too – it’s been easier to plop off the back of Quest or Edna afterwards for a dive. And then there’s the sand and grit. Urghh.
The first day we just drove around the island. Got as far as the entry to the Washington-Slagbaai National Park. It caps off the whole north of the island, and has one single entry point. It was closed. No explanation. It is usually open, even now. We stared at the gate.
To be honest, we’re good. Not that we don’t enjoy cacti bushes and red Earth. We spent the day scoping out dive sites instead. Went as far north to a dive site called Candyland. Since the wind is still fierce at the moment; we wanted to see what the dive entry was like through the surf.
After, we headed a bit south to the headquarters of Bonaire’s national parks management, Stinapa. Their own dive site is called Oil Slick Leap. It consists of a large wooden platform and a ladder you can easily enter and exit from. Sorted. We’re ready.