Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Tales from the Great Barrier Reef

As I've written the past few blogs all in one go, I've kept realising so many stories and amazing experiences which didn't make it into the blogs. Rather than go back, I'll simply blog a mess of memories as they come to me.

I mentioned the dinosaur egg Mereta and I purchased. Upon waking up day 2, we checked to see if our egg was hatching, and discovered someone had written on the side of the bucket "Godzilla eats liveaboard boat on Great Barrier Reef - No survivors" Turns out the skipper of the boat had discovered our egg and got a big kick out of it. Denvis became the hit of the boat, numerous times throughout the day all the instructors, crew and passengers would check up on Denvis' hatching progress and excitedly tell me as new progress was made. Denvis is currently halfway out of his shell and continues to grow. Obviously, Denvis remains on the boat, he is at home there on the GBR and has many loving persons watching out for him and his development!

There are so many beautiful sea creatures which I have seen and haven't been able to mention in the previous blogs. During the 8am dive that I couldn't participate in I watched a group of trumpet fish and flute fish near the boat. The last night dive, just as I was about to jump in, a sea snake swam past. The next morning as I was about to jump in a puffer fish swam past. I saw on one of my morning dives three sting rays beneath me, one even swam into a nearby patch of sand and dug himself in, then a fish came and bothered him so he swam off. I saw and held numerous sea cucumers. During my night dive with Scott I saw 3 foot long black and white sea snake beneath me - I discovered later it is extremely venomous and am glad I didn't know that at the time. I saw many different coloured Nemo's but not the Nemo from the movie. I saw angelfish, parrotfish, surgeonfish, moorish idol's, barracuda's, so many fish. I stuck my hand in numerous clams for the joy of watching them shut and try to eat me. I scratched the back of a sea turtle. In the dive with Taka I saw a nudibranch.

I saw dolphins from the sundeck one day, and also a whale breaching in the distance. On the day boat on the way home I saw 3 whales breaching.

After every dive we would all compare what we saw, and I was one of the luckiest divers. A few of the things others saw out there that I didn't was the Nemo from the movie, a squid, and a black tipped shark.

I have a few physical reminders of my adventures. My legs are quite tight from all the swimming and I can feel my abs tightening :) I also have blisters on my feet from the fins, and scrapes all over my legs from the coral. I've been disinfecting my scrapes regularly as there are many bacteria in the ocean and it could easily become infected. Apparently coral scrapes take forever to heal, and are quite painful and itchy in the process, from the white dots surrounding a few of the scrapes I definitely bumped into some poisonous coral species.

And yet, what I wouldn't give to be out there diving right now! I shall return, and in the meantime I will live off the high from the last few days and the incredible adventure and experience it has been.


Becky said...

Mary - I'm trying not to be envious. :) Sounds like you're having a wonderful time.

So sorry I couldn't find you guys at WYD. I tried on the Wednesday but went to the wrong location for Notre Dame. Then I finally got there on Friday night and the Sisters said you had already cleaned up. :(

I know...I'm a failure. *Sigh*

Can't wait to have you back!


Peter said...

Mary, that sounded like the coolest, most magnificent time ever. when you return i will join you, i'm serious. i was going to brag a bout all the cool stuff i've done all summer but it all sounds so paltry compared to what you did
tons of love,