I kept getting progressively sicker when we were on vacation. And trying really hard not to show it, but I could have just plopped myself under a palm tree and napped for days. One of the things we had booked in advance was this awesome all day snorkel excursion. We had done it prior and it was just so worth the cost. The boat ride, exploring Buck Island, the amazing colors of fish you see when you snorkel and the cook out later where hermit crabs and mongoose come to see if maybe you have a bit of hot dog or bun you don’t need. If you have a chance, you should do it.
So the day of the snorkel, I know in my head this would be a very bad idea to leave the boat. I am not breathing the best (even with cold meds and asthma inhalers) and while if a person had to meet their end, surrounded by warm water, sunny skies and friendly fish might not be the worst way… I feared it would cause much drama. So I inwardly pouted and stayed on board with the captain, a man in his early 90s and Renita (a lovely, slightly flamboyant lady in her mid 60s).
Let’s step back a moment. This was our third vacation here and our third trip on this snorkel tour. Part of the reason I love this tour was the wonderful crew we have had every single time AND the melting pot of people who go on this trip. This time was no exception… we had a lovely group of 8 Danes who jumped back and forth in language and I learned that mongoose is pretty much the same word in both languages; we had the adorable Lesbian couple who were hesitant to hold hands at first and then felt accepted (and the one lady had the coolest tats on her ankles!); college baseball players from MN with their parents; Mr. Never Stop Talking from Chicago with his 90 year old uncle; the cool kids from CA (one of which ended up throwing up on the ride back, ewwww) and two couples from NJ that were fluent in both English and Italian who had traveled a TON together. Renita was a member of this last group.
So everyone (except we four) get off the boat for the learning part of the snorkel and then can go their own ways, the two crew lead the two groups on the “tour” to make sure everyone is doing ok. The captain (so chill, early 30s dude with a great play list) goes over to R and asks why she doesn’t want to go. She expresses that she cannot swim. He said, what if I can make it so you can see fish, be safe and not have to swim, would you try? She pondered it and said again, I can’t swim and he said calmly won’t be a problem. So they fitted her out with a mask and tube all in one, had one of the crew come over and she laid on a ring and he pulled her around and she put her face in the water and was out for at least 20 minutes.
She came back on board and was giddy as a kid on Christmas morning. We all clapped for her and told her how proud we were of her and she went on and on about the colors of fish she had seen. And I realized why I was supposed to not snorkel that day. I told the captain later that it was as such a kind thing he did for her and he shrugged it off… but it was… very kind and more reinforcement for me that things happen for a reason… even when I pout.