Sunday, February 24, 2008


A year ago this past week we were on a sailboat scuba diving around the Bahamas. We got off of the boat two times during the week, once for about 10 minutes on a deserted island and a second time on the second to last night when we ported and partied on Bimini.

I’ll never forget this trip, mostly because it was the worst travel experience EVER, but also because it was our first time warm water diving and we were with some of our best friends.

In addition to missing our flight, almost not making the boat, and loosing luggage we spent the week shacking up with Mike & Alanna in a room no bigger then a small closet. The room consisted of bunks and about a foot of walking space between the beds and the door. We couldn’t have luggage, there was no place to store it on the boat, so our clothes stayed with us in our bed. The sleeping arrangements sucked. And that is putting it mildly. Within hours of being at sea Collin, Mike, and Alanna were puking over the side of the boat while Justin gleefully drank wine and snapped pictures. Damn him and his no sea sickness. I didn’t puke over the side, no, I made it all the way down into our cabin and into bed (we had the top bunk), before the urge hit me. I practically fell out of bed, my hand covering my mouth and had to shove the guy across the hall out of the way as I wretched into the head. Good times. I wish I could say things got better after that first night, but they didn’t. On day 3 we hit the worst storm they’d seen a while. We were cruising through 12-foot waves and even the seasoned divers were suffering from sea sicknesses. We spent most of that day lying in the bunks in the dining area, watching the fruit hammock swing back and forth with such force it could have knocked someone out.

I learned a couple of things on this trip: 1) when picking a wetsuit make sure you do not choose a size that is comfortable on land, unless you want to spend the week dreading each dive, not wanting to get back in that freezing ass cold water. 2) Next dive trip will involve sleeping on land, with a beach and a bed. No more of this sea shit.

But, that all said, when I look back at the pictures I have a hard time not remembering the fun we had. I’m glad we did it, even if we have no intention of ever doing it again.

I’ve never shown anyone any of the pictures from our trip because, well, I didn’t take any. But our friends did, and I thought I’d share them with you now, a year later. These are all courtesy of these two: Mike & Justin (and that’s our boat, The Morning Star, in the back ground!). Thanks guys!

The thing that is so awesome about diving is that it is a completely different world under the water and it is so amazing to watch the animals in their own environment. My favorite part of the trip was seeing the octopus on the wall dive. Collin's favorite was the shark dive, where they dropped food for roughlty 20-30 sharks. We don't have any pictures of this because you were advised to stay very still during the feeding, but I can tell you it was simply amazing. Here are some pictures Justin took with his underwater camera.
Okay, this is just Collin and I, not quite as interesting as the sea creatures, but it's the only dive picture we have of us so I had to include it.

Putting the sea sickness aside, the thing that was great about being on the boat is that it felt like we had the sea all to ourselves. We could look out for miles and see nothing but the ocean, only occasionally could you see a passing ship in the far distance. The other really amazing thing was looking at the stars at night, after the engine was off and the sails were up. It was so peaceful listening to the sails snap in the wind, carrying us to our next destination. No cars, no phones, just the open water with waves slapping against the boat and the wind in your face.

At the end of our 6 days on the boat we spent a couple of days hanging around Freeport lying on the beach and shoping in Port Lucaya. We needed those two days to decompress. Sand never felt so wonderful beneath my feet.


Rachel said...

Even though it was a "challenging" trip, it is the perfect thing to think about in Feb. You took me back to our honeymoon--a sailboat cruise in the Bahamas, which is a great memory. Thank you!

Jenny said...

WOW! These pictures are awesome.

Just found you, I have lots to say. Mainly:

1. You are brave to dive.

2. There is no way in hell I would survive on a boat for 6 days. Once in the Cayman's someone paid a bunch of money for me to go on this chartered boat and I spent the longest, most torturous day of my life puking and struggling for equilibrium.

3. TTC sucks.

Aubrey said...

I loved reading this and seeing the pictures. This seems like such a Kate trip. Darrell and I keep planning our travels for when we have the time and money to do it. We never had a honeymoon and keep hoping our 10th anniversary will be our time to take an amazing trip. Arlington will be in 4th, Mags in 3rd and Gabe in 1st grade. Although Mom wasn't planning on retiring until the next year. But we should be able to leave for a nice long trip by then. Not that scubadiving is even anything we'd think about, but I'll know now to avoid this one!

Kate said...

Rachel - you're absolutely right, it's kinda of easy to forget this challenging part when I look at pictures and long for sun and sand after this brutal winter.

Jenny - Welcome! I feel for you on the boat trip, before this trip I'd never really experienced sea sickness. It sucks. The worst part was that for a week after we got off the boat I was dizzy and slightly nauseous because my equilibrium was so screwed up.

Aubrey - A Kate trip. Ha! I love it, and you are so, so right.

Anonymous said...

Right after I read your post last night I watched the Today show and heard about a man who went to the bahamas and did a similar shark feeding dive, was accidentally bitten by a shark when mistaken for a fish and then died from the bite because they were so far out to sea!!
How bizarre! Made me think of you and how glad I am that this did NOT happen to you all :)
Anywho, how are ya?
(Becky-Ems lil sis)

Kate said...

Becky - I hadn't heard about this, thanks so much for filling me in. I had to get online right away and see if it was the charter we were with. It wasn't, thank God. Wow, that's scary.