• Recent Posts

  • Archives

  • Categories

  • Meta

JUMP IN!

????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????I don’t jump into water.  Not into a swimming pool, nor a lake.  I don’t like water splashing on my face and I don’t like being a six-foot torpedo in depths known or unknown.  I ease down a ladder into water.  As a mother and a Gran, I’ve treaded deep water for as long as my children and grandchildren wanted to jump.  But jumping in water is one thing I’ve told how to do, but never shown. “Just jump.  You’ll come right back up,” I’ve said.  So imagine my apprehension when I was suited up to snorkel in the middle of the Caribbean Sea near Belize, and the guide says, “We’ll jump off the side of the boat.”

I’d been snorkeling before.  In this same location, but on a big boat – big enough that it had a ladder with wide steps so I carefully made my way down while wearing giant-size flippers.  This was a 25-foot dive boat that carried only nine people – a guide and eight paying snorkel guests.

I was excited about seeing water wildlife again and I was comfortable wearing a life jacket, a snorkel mask, and giant flippers.  Chris, the eighteen-year-old guide, stopped the boat at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve in the middle of the sea, but surrounded by many boats.   I could see at least a hundred snorkel tubes sticking out of the aqua clear water.  Chris adjusted my mask and I said, without my fellow snorkelers hearing me,  “I’m nervous about jumping in the water.  I don’t jump in water.”

Chris pulled strands of my hair out from under my mask. “No hair under mask so no water in nose.  The ladder is too narrow to go down.  You could fall and get hurt.  You can jump,” he said. I wasn’t so sure.  He guided me to the side of the boat.  “Sit here.” On the six-inch wide side.  “Now turn and get your legs over the water.  Push off with your hands.”  I could see foot-long silver fish and the ocean bottom, about twelve feet below.  “If you go under, count to 3.  You’ll be back up before you get to 3.”  That’s what he tells the little kids, I thought as I pushed myself off the boat.

I did go under and counted 1, 2 and surfaced.  Before I could focus my eyes I heard, “A turtle in front of you!”  A green turtle, as big as a galvanized steel washtub, swam just inches from my nose.  I felt his back flippers swish on my stomach.  I lay my hand on his shell and pushed to give myself some water space.  The turtle swam away.  I looked around to locate my friends and our guide in the water.

The snorkeling adventure was all I’d hoped for.  Thousands and thousands of brightly colored fish, turtles, anemone, coral, manta rays, even nurse sharks.  I’d do it again.

And now I have another reason to be eager for warm weather.  My Grands will be shocked when I put on my life jacket and jump off a pontoon boat into the lake.  Last summer they said, “Gran, don’t go down the ladder.  Jump in with us!”  I’ll be a nervous and I’ll hold my nose and I’ll count to three.

Advertisements

One Response

  1. Fun…I might jump with you…in a life jacket of course! I always love your articles…can’t wait to hear Belize stories. Hugs, Kat

    PS…loved our beach photos! Thanks Susan.

    Kat Rust Bobkats@frontiernet.net

    >

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: