Last week Pez Maya welcomed 15 new volunteers from 5 different countries! Welcome John, Mariana, Josh, Holly, Eli, Kerry, Tate, Will, Luke, Jessica, Alex, Matt, Sam, Mitch and Madison! With the 4 remaining volunteers from the last phase and 8 staff, it is a very full house. It was an eventful first week full of many accomplishments. Everyone is working hard at learning their adult fish, coral, juvenile fish and diving skills. Congratulations to Sam and Alex for passing their juvenile fish tests and Tate and Holly for passing their adult fish test and Aaron for passing his coral test! Congratulations to Mariana, John, Josh and Madison for successfully completing their PADI Open Water Certification on Friday and becoming certified scuba divers! All divers have begun spot tests to practice identifying fish and coral species on the reef. Also, a big congratulations to staff member Valeria for completing her Dive Master!
It was a beautiful week at Pez Maya. The perfect weather allowed all volunteers to get in lots of dives and rainstorms cooled us down all weekend. A variety of incidental sightings occurred this week including a Loggerhead sea turtle, green turtles, stingray and many crocodiles. Four turtles nests have been spotted along the beach and we're patiently waiting for the first hatchlings.
The week was filled with studying, completing chores, a beach clean and diving but we still found plenty of time to relax and get to know each other in the evenings. This week we celebrated Canada Day for the Canadian volunteers on base, July 4th for the American volunteers and Jessica's 20th birthday! On Friday the Staff treated the volunteers to a fiesta style feast including our first Lionfish of the phase. After a fun weekend in Tulum and snorkeling at Akumal, we are all back on base, ready for another week full of learning!