Sunday, March 7, 2010

Gord, Unmasked!

Suzanne and I took our inflatable dinghy and left our sailboat anchored in Benure's Bay on Norman Island to motor to a "dinghy mooring ball" where one can tie off to a floating, anchored ball during the day to snorkel the rugged, coral coast of the shoreline. It is nice that the Parks Dept. has done this for visitors to make it convenient to attach your dinghy to the ball, free of charge, in 50 feet of water and simply put on your snorkel and mask and swim fins, and push off from the boat to enter the mysterious and wondrous underwater world that takes up over 72% of our watery planet.
We always plan the dive, and dive the plan, but Sue has a lot more hotter blood than I do, so after an hour of sightseeing, and even watching a sleeping 7 foot nurse shark doze on the bottom, I told Sue that I was going back to the dinghy to warm up.
It takes some strong arms to hoist yourself out of the water and over the 3 foot sides of the inflatable boat, so I removed my custom-made, prescription mask and attached snorkel and threw them into the bottom of the boat and with one mighty grunt and heave, like a beaching whale, i hauled myself into the dinghy and relished in the warmth of the hot sides of the rubber boat. I removed my swim fins and plunked them into the bottom also.
Just about then, Sue frantically swam up beside the boat and shouted: "Your mask is sinking"!
I looked down to my dismay to see that my fins must have flipped out my mask back into the water!
Damn! A prescription mask is not just for fun, it is a necessity to see the condition of the bottom of the boat and rudder, etc.
I have a scuba dive tank aboard "Ocean Wings", but the first rule of diving is to never do it alone.
So we raced back to the beach at Norman Island and I ran into the dive shop, just as they were closing, and explained the situation to a very lovely young lady named Cortney Hanson who was the Dive Master there. She agreed to go back to the mooring ball, put on her dive gear and take a look for me.
I was worried about her going in alone, but she insisted that she was fine.
She donned her tank and regulator and splashed in, with Sue floating above to guide her to the last known position. After about 15 minutes of watching her bubbles circling the dinghy as she scoured the bottom 50 feet down, she came up holding a mask and snorkel!
I said: "Sorry, but that is not mine"!
She got the joke and laughed heartily.
I got my mask back and Cortney said: "No charge, have a nice day"!
We thanked her profusely and watched her motor back to Tortola, where she lived.
The next morning, I slipped an envelope with my thanks and enough for dinner and a case of beer, between the dive shop doors.
Thank you Cortney Hanson, it is people like you that make the world a lovelier place!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Sue & Gord, just wanted to say hi, looks like your having a blast. Wish we were there. An update on Elmer, he is going for his surgery this Friday the 19th @ 8:00 am. Will let you know how things go, and will be looking forward to seeing you on your visit home.
    Love Wendy & Elmer


Sailboat owners Gord and Sue aboard their 55' Whitby Ketch "Ocean Wings" share their adventures and travels as they start their retirement, living their dream of seeing the world from oceanside.
Ocean Wings is a recent purchase and our first foray into the Sailing Lifestyle. We're excited and a little scared. Join us in our adventure.