The Dragon Blood Tree

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High up in the Dixam Plateau you start to feel like you're in a Dr. Seuss book.  I'm not sure what my favorite tree was before (the Buckeye tree?), but there's no doubt about what my favorite is now.

Here's the very first one we came upon alongside the road--it's the most distinctive form of life on the island.  As you climb in elevation, you can see them everywhere dotting the landscape.

This was our final tourist activity before heading to the airport the next morning, and it's the perfect way to cap the trip.  There are other pristine beaches in the world, but there's certainly nothing like these trees anywhere else on the planet.

During this outing we also dropped down into a canyon to have lunch, where Lillie had a swim in a sketchy algae pool.  I was not interested in contracting leptospirosis or the like.

Here's a nice contrast of date trees with the dragon bloods high up in the distance:

The photo I totally forgot to take in this little area was of the ugly side of Socotra.  Folks aren't too keen on putting trash in a trash can, and the picnic area around here was absolutely disgusting.  Madagascar isn't the most affluent of places, but I don't think we encountered anything even remotely close to this filth there.  And I'm not sure if trash even exists in the Galapagos.  (And if there was a speck of trash, the guides are quick to put it in their pocket there.)

Anyway, I'll save further comments on that for another time.  From the Dixam area, we descended back to Hadibo for our final night to be spent at Adeeb's Eco Lodge.  While this was the nicest place we stayed on the island, you wouldn't get it confused for the eco lodges you'd encounter on an African safari.

Our tent was nicely enclosed and even featured a power strip!  This was a great place to end the trip because there were mats all around our tent that allowed us a fairly clean space to unload/reload the suitcases.

Amazingly, the only other Americans we encountered on the trip turned out to be a young couple teaching English in Aden, Yemen.  The kicker being they were also from Seattle.  Crazy.  We spent some time catching up with them at the fine dining room at Adeeb's:

And that's pretty much our time on Socotra.  I'll round out one more quick post on the island, but then we still need to get over to Cairo...

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