Friday, March 12, 2010


Oh, man, is it foggy. Pea soup, can-barely-see-across-the-street foggy for the second or third day in a row. I forget which it is, it's too foggy around here. But it's been surprisingly busy at the dive shop. Maybe people are waking up from their long winter's nap, or maybe the economy is getting a teensy bit better. Either way I'm happy to have actual work to do at work, makes me feel a bit less like I'm stealing my pay.

March 11--Saint Pierre Island, Seychelles. Cheryl lay on her stomach in the warm, clear water. She was riveted to the teeming life that lived on the reef just below the surface of the ocean. It had taken nearly all of her courage to get herself to the little watersports center at the resort's beach and to ask one of the children behind the counter to help her learn to snorkel. Sure that she would be making a fool of herself and that the watersports kids would pass her around like a moldy shoe, she was surprised when one of the blond young men said, "I'll be happy to, ma'am" with what looked like a genuine smile. He introduced himself as Peter, and helped her choose a mask, snorkel, and fins before they went down to the shallow area off the shore and she got her first glimpse of the world beneath the ocean's surface. Peter taught her how to clear water from her mask and snorkel tube, and how to fin slowly along the reef. He showed her where the tiny purple shrimp hid in the pale pink anemones and reassured her that the silver barracuda patrolling above the reef was not interested in her. By the end of an hour she felt at home paddling around and only got out once all afternoon to get a drink of water, go to the restroom, and put on more sunscreen. She spent the evening wondering if she were too old to learn to scuba dive so she could get right down by the fish. She fell asleep planning to ask Peter in the morning.

Ahh, there's nothing like a fantasy dive when it's cold, foggy, and damp.

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