We've caught about 30 unique animals so far this trip. We caught a couple of cute juveniles over the past few days and a bunch of large, brutish males. We recaught an animal tagged from the previous trip in 2004 today. He was a large male with a swollen mouth and almost no teeth. We've been taking pictures of all of the animals, so going forward, we should have a database of teeth and animal appearance. (Pictured at left is a more typical individual. Don't try this at home, kiddies!)
It was a rainy day today. There were dark clouds at sunrise and it rained off and on all day. A young couple arrived yesterday from Texas who we learned were newlyweds on their honeymoon, so we joked that today was good weather for them. We got soaked going out to the field to check the traps. We were doing OK, until we got to a trap that was placed under a termite colony. Daniel balked about pulling the trap out to rebait it and then the rain started. I crawled in there, rebaited the trap, but was drenched by the time I got into the car. After a few minutes, I heard Daniel tell Buzz that he was going into some wet vegetation as "punishment" for making me get wet. But he was punishing himself.
After we got back this afternoon and had lunch, I was tired, so I decided to take a nap. Most days, it's too hot in the afternoon to consider napping, but with the clouds it was a possibility. I only slept for a couple of hours, but I felt better afterwards. I've been a bit sunburned for the past couple of days, so I've been trying to keep out of the sun anyway.
Daniel's friend Trent left today. We exchanged email addresses, phone numbers, etc. and I said I would set up Muppyville accounts for them. Daniel spent almost all of his time with Trent over the past couple of days and is somewhat at loose ends today. An interesting dynamic set up among the children. There was an older boy (Marcello) from one family, and then two boys from another (Trent, one year older than Daniel) and Hardy (a couple years older than Jonathon). Trent and Hardy had met Marcello before Daniel or Jonathon did. Marcello seemed to enjoy playing with the little kids (I think because he enjoyed being in control) and seemed to take little interest in Daniel. Jonathon loves Marcello and calls him "Marshmallow". Daniel said that when he called Marcello that, he hurt his arm. I could have told him that would happen. But now Trent and Hardy are gone and only Marshmallow is left. We're lucky that Tom's going to be here tomorrow.
For dinner, we went to The Harbor Yard, a little bar and restaurant downtown. A blackboard near the door indicated the specials: baked chicken, curried chicken, stewed goat, conch in butter, or red snapper; with rice, mac & cheese, and "provision". When we got inside, we found that there were no menus -- that was the extent of the available dishes and there was no conch after all. Daniel had really wanted fries, but when it became apparent there weren't any, he handled it amazingly well. In fact, when he asked what I thought he should get and I indicated that I thought the baked chicken would be safest, he said, "That's so boring. I didn't come all the way to St. Croix to eat baked chicken!" He almost got the stewed goat, but got the red snapper at the last minute. It was excellent and he ate most of it. I had forgotten that "provision" meant mixed vegetables.