Wednesday, July 11, 2018

First week, multiple creatures

Lovely Vacation in the Boston Harbor
Summer was off to a late start during the year of 2018. What felt like the longest winter ever, finally came to the end as the week of July 4th welcomed the Boston Harbor with warm winds and sunshine. Save the Harbor is back into action and the team this year has got plenty of tricks up their sleeves to give the youth what they need to have a fun summer. 

My first day back went smoothly over at Piers Park. We started the day with a game of "The west wind blows" where we learned each other's names. Next we played Indian Chief, which to my surprise, the kids were fairly slick enough to go unnoticed by the guesser throughout multiple rounds. Before we headed down the dock we went over simple, but pretty important rules, then our day began. I spent a good time fishing with this one boy, Ismael. For an 8 year old, he sure did know a lot about NASA and our solar system. When I asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up, he told me, "I want to work for NASA". He seemed to have his heart set on creating rovers and spacecrafts for them. It all started when I told him about how the tide comes in and out about every six hours. Ismael immediately began to tell me about the creation of the moon which led to more.

After a few minutes of fishing, Nieomi asked me to join her and Wesley on a kayak ride. In the water we paddled around the dock to see what all the fuss was about, another set of kids on a kayak were going crazy trying to catch a moon jelly from under the bridge. As we paddled under we spotted another and they grew happier to the sound of TWO jellyfish! Luckily, the jellies eventually made it around the dock in time for Garret to pick them up and show them to the kids. We spent the hot morning and afternoon session fishing and kayaking. What better way to spend my first day back?

Proper Technique
Day two and three, we join Kharliyah on All Access Boston Harbor to George's island for the hottest Tuesday yet. The sun rose early and the rays shined bright on this day. We greeted about 200 camps and families at the pavilion each day who were all eager to ride the boat over to the island. Tuesday I met a wonderful pair of best friends who had never been to the island before. I asked them if they were planning to go into the dark tunnel and they insisted they would even if the black lady spooked them a bit. I informed them of our fishing lessons that would be on dock after lunch if they wanted to stop by and learn. I met them later that day at exactly 12:30pm on the dock and they told me about their adventure into the tunnel as well as the Island. They were most excited about the tunnel and being able to try fishing because these were things they never done before. I felt proud and helpful to be able to give them a good experience. These girls were not at all intimidated by the claws of the crabs or by the heat of the sun. They were good listeners and very patient when it came to fishing. Although we did not catch any fish, we enjoyed observing the crabs and talking about what kinds of fish they could pull out of the harbor. 
Fishing = Patience

Thursday was another incredibly hot day and I met a lovely family from the UK who had just moved into Boston. They were most intrigued and interested in fishing more than the island. When they saw the amount of crabs we had in our touch tank that morning they went wild. Most surprised about the different types of crabs we had in our tank, they wanted to touch them all and hold one of each. We caught a few giant Jonah Crabs that morning and a few, slightly small red rock crabs, along with some feisty green ones.

Fairly new to Boston, I informed them about a few must visit places like Prudential center and tower as well as the Children's Museum. They told me they really enjoyed our trip so I encouraged them to sign up for one of our Spectacle Island trips! The kids liked the sound of that and I let them know they could sign up online if they google-d Save the Harbor All Access Boston. The family was sure they would aim to return in August. I ended my week where I started, at Piers Park on Friday. We led an environmental lesson on the salinity of water that morning after kayaking and fishing by the dock. I helped Meaghan at station 1, where we used refractometers and learned about how salt gets into our oceans. One of the kids, Ferdinand knew lots about Estuaries. They were in amazement at the lack of salt we found was in our harbor compared to filtered water with sea salt we added. They measured the buoyancy of water with eggs and understood why it was necessary for marine life. 

18 crabs and counting
Will it bite me?
Learning something new everyday,

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