January 24, 2011

Close encounters

Our first stop was Grand Cayman and we chose to revisit Sting Ray City. Hubby and I were there on our 20th anniversary cruise 4 years ago (just six months following Steve Irwin's death). We almost had the opportunity two years ago, but were not able to tender at Cayman due to high winds. As expected, it was an amazing experience. The water is crystal clear (evidently explained by no rivers running from the island into the Caribbean) and the most beautiful color turquoise. Sting Ray City is a sandbar on the inside of a coral reef so it's easy to stand and move around. Legend has it fisherman stopped to clean their fish there so the rays would gather for scraps. Our guides had plenty of squid (thawed) to attract the rays and though we were the first boat to arrive, several others soon followed. The rays are everywhere and it's very safe so long as you don't hold them against their will or step on the barb in their tail. Chunky was tentative but we had talked about what to expect well in advance and he always had the option to get back in the boat (which he took advantage of liberally). Here are just a couple of photos:

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