We were very sad to farewell Andy, it’s been so nice to have an extra adult around and have an excuse to indulge in the odd Pina Colada at lunch time! The day she left we had a very nice surprise. After a morning at the local laundry (so much fun), Pete left Tom and I to do a quick food shop whilst he delivered the laundry and two very cranky boys back to the boat (hot, wet, and annoyed at having to do homework at the laundry). They arrived back at the boat to find a dolphin hanging around, so jumped in and swam with it for around 20 minutes. I was amazed to find the dolphin still there when we had finished the shopping, so Tom and I also had a play with it. It was such an incredible experience, the dolphin circled, swam away, came back, and when I dived down, it twisted, almost as if it wanted to play with me like I was a dolphin. Definitely an experience of a lifetime! We have some video footage – hopefully soon we will get around to editing and sharing our video’s.
The next day, back at the Chat and Chill, we unfortunately missed out on joining in on a painting coconut shell event, put on by one of the yachties. I did get to watch everyone else paint their masterpieces, and was fortunate enough to get a bag of coconuts (prepared with the white base paint) so that later on our travels we could have a go ourselves. Keep a look out for our efforts, I’m sure they won’t be as good as the artist!
That night, we had the crew from Sandy Feet, an Australian family of four from Perth, join us for dinner on our boat. They have been travelling for over 2 years now, and are very keen on not only diving with sharks, but also sharing with everyone the knowledge they have amassed about these incredible species. It was great hearing all about their travels, and they were so kind in giving us their guide books for the areas we were heading to over the next few months, so much better to read via a paper compared with an electric copy.
On our last day, we joined about 50 other yachties at the St Francis pub to listen to a very detailed presentation about sharks from Andy and Laura from Sandy Feet. Wow, so much of what I know about sharks has been perpetuated by movies (dam you Jaws) and the media. They are truly amazing creatures, very timid, and so not interested in eating humans as I have always feared. Andy described an experiment where divers swam in the water with a container of human blood , with sharks that were totally disinterested, however, when the blood was that of a barracuda, they went crazy! I also loved hearing about some of the statistics about the likelihood of getting attacked by a shark – I was amazed to hear that 10,000 Americans die each year from choking on food, and that you are more likely to die from a vending machine falling on you than a shark attack. It’s statistics like these that puts it all into perspective. They had the most amazing photo’s of their diving experiences, and showed a number of videos of a relaxed shark, verses one that is starting to get unhappy (pectoral fins down), so I’m feeling a lot more comfortable about being able to recognise some of the sharks mannerisms when snorkelling – perhaps I’ll even start swimming further away from the dinghy in future.