Secret Turtle Beach

For the week between Christmas and New Year's, David and I camped at this quiet beach, which was several hours on a bus to the nearest bank in any direction.  It was a sea turtle sanctuary, complete with arms guards walking the beach at night.  The only way to stay there was to camp, which is what we did, just a stone's throw from the mighty Pacific, on white sand beaches at the base of jagged rock outcroppings.

When the locals shook the outside of my tent to wake me up at one in the morning, I knew what was going on, even with my limited Spanish, because they kept saying "Tortugas. Tortugas."

They handed me a plastic salad bowl and I followed their lead in collecting as many turtles as I could.  They were hatching from the sand underneath us, coming out on all sides.  We carried them over to the surf and dumped them into the water, dozens at a time.  

I'd never been part of a more magical scenario.