Hello all! 

For a while now we have been a little bummed because Mauritius was taken off our itinerary because the bad weather we hit slowed us down.  Everyone was a relatively good sport, but we were really wanting some land time to break up this 11 or 12 day rough seas :/  The resident directors set up a ship-wide dance, we had ribs BBQ and brunch added to our menu, and other activities trying to make our “would-be Mauritius day” fun.  They then announced that evening that they had figured out a way to get the Mauritius immigration officials onboard at 6 am and then we would have from 8 to 12 am on Mauritius!  We were all so so excited and cheered big time after the announcement.  We had a quick pre-port meeting the night before where they stressed how important it is that we get back on time.

We were all up to do the face-to-face immigration process early.  Then as soon as they announced that we had been cleared we all got in the line of students, Life-Long-Learners, and dependent families that went from the 2nd deck (where we disembarked) to the 6th deck and beyond.  Kara and I went with Tory, Heather, Gabby, Alyssa, and our new friend to the group, Jackie.  We got on the water taxi (small fishing boats that taxi us from the ship to the city) and then we got a taxi to the nearest beach.  I know it sounds silly that we got off a boat in the middle of water to get to a beach next to water, but it was actually really nice to have beach time for our first time since Dominica.  Apparently these beaches are world-wide famous: white, fine sand beaches, crystal clear water, etc.  It was nice to just spend time on the beach for an hour and a half. 

We then went looking around, shopping for trinkets, etc.  Taking the taxi was cool because we got to see this fascinating island better.  The people are both black (from African influence in the “nearby” island of Madagascar) and Indian.  English, French and Indian languages were spoken here in addition to the commonly used Creole language.  This is also the island where the dodo bird was discovered and then routinely killed off to extinction.  I wish I could have learned more about the island (most of our teachers took it off the course list when we found we weren’t going), it seemed like a fascinating place with lots of  interesting history.

Within hours of leaving Mauritius we were back to the huge swells.  We’re all working on our talent show performances.  It should be really fun and a great memory.  Our class schedule is changed and we’re now back to classes.  At least midterms are done and now we can just do regular schoolwork!  I’m loving my languages class.  The teacher is Armin Schwegler and it is a phenomenal teacher and person.  It was his birthday yesterday so Kara and I decorated a little poster and put it on his cabin door yesterday.  Lol!  The things you can do when your professor lives down the hall from you.  The stuff that is just SO different from a normal college experience: lunch with him yesterday, dinner with the music teacher a few nights ago, slept a few hammocks away from my global studies teacher on the Amazon, etc.  It’s weird but really cool because we really get to know our teachers well and outside of school context.  We know their families, they know our friends, we all have movie nights together, etc.  Just fun random!

Thank you for all of the wonderful comments on my blog!  They are emailed to me on the ship and I wish I could respond to them from the ship as well.  Just know I love every comment!  Please email me your emails if you want to keep in contact outside of the blog.  Love you all!!!

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