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Wednesday, December 5, 2012 | Latest audio lessons → VOA Learning English

Voices of America: Bill Alvarez, Everglades Guide



My name is Bill Junior, and this is the Everglades. Welcome to my office.

This is where I make a living. It's home. It's awesome. I enjoy what I do out here. I come out here in the mornings. I'm out here every day -- seven days a week. And, I enjoy showing the tourists all of the alligators and the birds. I enjoy it as much as they do.

I can't picture myself just sitting behind a desk, all day, for eight hours a day. Out here, I'm doing something that's fun -- driving a boat. It's awesome!

This right here is the most beautiful bird in the Everglades. It's called the purple gallinule. And that brown one you're looking at is just a juvenile. Whether it be a new dragonfly, or a bird, every day I see something new out here. It's kind of like Jurrasic Park! Yeah, definitely.

This is where we will find all of the big alligators. The farther down that we go, the more and more alligators we'll see -- and the bigger they get. And, we're going to have a couple of big alligators, and they're going to be, like, "bam!" right next to the boat. But they're not going to get in the boat. I promise!

An alligator - they can jump out of the water more than half of their body [length] at a standstill point by using their tail to project themselves up. I've seen them jump about this high out of the water to catch a baby bird on a branch and eat it - with people on the boat.

I've met so many different people - and it's awesome! Ever since I stepped out here in the Everglades, I knew this was for me. I love it! I enjoy it.