03.05.2013 - 03.05.2013
Sunburned my ass while snorkeling yesterday. I'd forgotten how colorful the fish were here, after having been so long on the other side of the Pacific (and in the Caribbean). Even in the coral graveyard we found small, bright fish, chasing the bubbles our fins kicked up. And the water's a more pleasant temperature. Yet, after the Galapagos, I can't help but feel that life, even in all its grotesque fecundity, is barely hanging on here. I dare not wonder why so much of the coral has died, if it has to do with all the soapy washing pouring directly into the sea or the lines of buoys that might indicate fish or shrimp farms or something else altogether. It might even perhaps be natural.
Coron Town has no beach. We are built up right on the water on cement jetties that likely replaced the mangroves, though here and there they are still bold enough to exert themselves. It is a noisy place with the standard off-key karaoke and vroom vroom of motorcycles. Touristy-ness shouldn't unnerve me after the Galapagos. Still, I've grown unused to the frenetic swarm of Asia. And the tourists in Coron swarm, too. I adjust my opinion that the Philippines is an undiscovered tourist location. Certainly China has discovered it, as is evidenced by the messages to Chinese tourists scrawled on building walls, not to mention the curl of mainland Mandarin heard everywhere. 1 billion people. There will be no quiet place left on earth. (And why not? Haven't they the same right as anyone else?)
We're supposed to meet some Swedes at the bar tonight, but Chris is fast asleep, and I am inclined to follow...