September 13, 2008
Today I took time to reflect on the past three weeks. I had finished my final and fourteen coral head yesterday and my work here has been completed. I am coming away with a better understanding of what marine scientists do out in the field. In addition to this, I have an appreciation of how much work and preplanning had to go into a project like this from ordering food for a group to sending laboratory equipment ahead of time to the research station (besides everything else in between). I must commend Julian Caley on how smoothly I think everything went. Even though I am an outsider looking in.
A couple of more people are leaving the island today. One is leaving on the resort's helicopter. I thought about leaving on it tomorrow but decided to go with the majority of our group who are taking the ship back to Gladstone.
I am looking forward to going home since I have been away for a month. But mostly I look forward to sharing this experience with my colleagues and students. I am aware that I am very fortunate to have had such an amazing opportunity. Last summer, when I was in Puerto Rico's rainforest, I could not of imagined that I would be on another island a half a world away the following year working next to scientists who are making new discoveries. I have come to realize that observations and fact-finding are as important as experimentation. All of this is needed for a better understanding of the world we live in. I am thankful to have been a part of this research team.
It is time to pack and prepare for the next steps. I will be putting together a presentation for my colleagues and students. Thanks to all the people that made this experience possible.