The time has come to tell you about my dives in the Whitsunday Islands.
Okay, before I go into a highly detailed, highly awesome description of my dives, I want to say WHAT ON EARTH WAS OUR GOOD FRIEND CAPTAIN JAMES COOK THINKING? I mean, he ran aground in the Whitsundays on the Great Barrier Reef, which tore a supermassive hole in the bottom of his boat, and water kept pouring in, and the only reason they actually survived was because a chunk of coral got stuck in the hole and partially blocked the water. And he named the islands after some religious holiday in England?! As my dear mother says, if I was him, I probably would’ve named it the OH MY GOD WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE Islands.
But then it probably wouldn’t have become a major tourist attraction.
Anyway, dives. The awesome thing about these dives was that they had all the equipment ready for you, so you didn’t need to turn on the air or fasten your BCD or regulators and whatnot to your tank. Unfortunately, before you got on the water, the tank still pretty much killed your back and shoulders. Not cool. You know, someday these stupidly heavy tanks are gonna be made of plastic, then we won’t have major spinal damage when we’re older, fellow divers.
(Sorry, my mind has a tendency to wander.)
Well, we pulled on our flippers, and slung our masks around our necks, and then hopped into the boat (metaphorically speaking, you can barely walk with those tanks) and Brent (the skipper) took us out to the dive site, where we did the roll-backward-off-the-boat way to get in the water. We did a buddy system; Bjorn (the dive instructor) was in the front, then two people I hadn’t bothered to learn the names of, then two more people I hadn’t bothered to learn the names of, then my mom and I. My dad would join us on our two later dives, but he was on a different one this time around.
Bjorn says that I use my air up a lot faster than others, because I’m so curious and I want to look at everything. This is true. I am a naturally curious person. Oh, I’m also a naturally suspicious person, but look at me, getting off topic again. It looks like I’m also a naturally ramble-y person.
It was really interesting, with all these huge coral structures, and lots of little fish swimming around everywhere. There was this one which I nicknamed ‘bacon-fish’ because they were white with broad red stripes, a bit like bacon sizzling away in a frying pan. Hey, I wonder if they taste like bacon! Probably not, though. You know, I’ve heard that boa-constrictor tastes just like chicken.
Argh, I’m rambling again.
The water was also a lot warmer than I thought it would be, but I guess that shouldn’t be a surprise. After all, it was the Great Barrier Reef. On the second dive, I saw an oceanic white-tip shark (I literally know all these sharks from a glance). On the third, I saw another white-tip, and also a huge turtle. Brent says if you go right up to a turtle and start swimming like one, it’ll think you’ll a turtle and not swim away, so that’s what I did, and it worked! I got up really close and had a chance to study it. My dad even got a video! It was a green turtle. They’re called that not because their shells or skin or anything is green, it’s because when you cook their meat, their meat actually turns green. How cool is that?