So I was a little geographically uninformed before we pulled into port in Peru. Checking out Peru on the map it appears to have a long stretch of what should be beautiful beach property on the Pacific Ocean. My only vision of Peru includes Machu Pichu with is vibrant green foliage and rainforest. That is NOT coastal Peru. Coastal Peru sits on the ocean where El Nino and La Nina converge switching up the weather patterns. The Coast we visited sees only 2 inches of rainfall a year. It's difficult for me to claim that I come from a desert state as Utah is experiancing all time record water amounts leading to devastating floods and keeping our ski industry open until July. But even though I think I know desert, this is a dry, dry, dry, arid landscape with mostly rocks and very little vegetation.
As we pulled into port this morning before dawn, I was viewing the coast from the bow of the ship and noticed linear movement in the waters. It rolled and boiled in all directions as far as the eye could see. As the darkness of night began to lift, the fins of hundreds of dolphins became apparent. In the clear water right next to the ship you could make out their swirling forms as they danced a greeting for the USNS Comfort. So we are here in this magical South American country where dolphins are the welcoming committee. But wait, sniff ... sniff, what else is wafting in the early morning hours from the nearby shore? Something I affectionately called "The Stench of Squid".