Day 1 |
Oct 28, 2011

Puerto Caldera, Costa Rica

By Robin Aiello, Marine Biologist lecturer

Weather: Extremely hot, humid and sunny
Air Temperature: 35ºC

‘Turn-around’ days are always so very busy! These are the days when we disembark the guests we have been sailing with and embark new guests that are joining us for another section of our continuous journey around the world.

Fortunately, everything went really smoothly today. All guests had arrived by 4pm, albeit tired and hot, but in a good mood – ready to start their 12-day “Rainforest & Reef” expedition voyage with us, here onboard the Silver Explorer.

Afternoons on embarkation day follow a routine – Mandatory Safety Drill at 4:30pm, where everyone gathers in The Theatre and listens to a brief overview of safety on the ship, then they try on the bright orange lifejackets and the crew escorts the guests out to the lifeboat muster stations so that everyone has a good idea of what they would do in the event of an emergency on board. After the drill, everyone gathered once again in The Theatre for another mandatory briefing – this one about the Zodiacs and the proper procedures for getting into and out of them.

At 6:15pm, the final event of the evening was held, once again, in The Theatre – the Staff Introductions. Heads of Departments were brought up on stage and introduced to the new guests. These were followed by the Expedition Team introductions. We are a great team – and one that I feel very privileged to be working with!

Team members are:
• Robin West (South Africa) – Expedition Leader
• Daniil Elterman (Latvia) – Assistant Expedition Leader
• Tim Amm (South Africa) – Staff Assistant
• Juan Carlos Restrepo – Geologist
• Hans-Peter Reinthaler (Austria) – Botanist
• Patricia Silva (Uruguay) – Ornithologist
• Claudia Holgate (South Africa) – Climatologist
• Claire Allum (Canada) – Archeologist
• Jarda Versloot (Netherlands) – zodiac driver
• Lou Davidson (New Zealand) – Photographer/Videographer
• and me, Robin Aiello, Marine Biologist from Australia.

Robin concluded the night’s briefings with a quick rundown of the activities scheduled for the next day – a tour of the beautiful and best National Park in Costa Rica – the Manuel Antonio National Park, a few kilometers from Quepos, Costa Rica.

Sail-away was just as we finished, so we all gathered out on the back deck for canapés and cocktails as we watched the lights of Puerto Caldera fade away in the distance. What a beautiful way to start the expedition!!!