Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Zanzibar V: Snorkeling

While pretty cool, snorkeling turned into a bit of a nightmare, for me anyway. We took a boat from a neighboring resort (after waking up around sunrise - above) with about a dozen other people on it out to the reef near Mnemba Island, a tiny little island about a 40-minute boat ride from the resort. There was very little cover from the sun; we were wearing wet suits for protection, but still it gets pretty darn hot. Most of the other people on the boat were scuba diving. Abdul was our snorkeling guide. He took us to two different spots on the reef with an hour break in the middle of sitting on the boat, eating fruit.

At the first spot everything was going swimmingly. Just as I thought I was about to be engulfed by a school of yellow and blue striped fish, I felt pricks of burning on my right wrist and my left elbow. I looked to my right and saw almost invisible strings tinged blue hanging down from the surface. I lifted my head and Abdul and J were both yelling. “Bluebottles!” I had no idea what the hell a bluebottle was, but guessed pretty quickly it was this stringy thing next to me and that it was not good. Panic. Abdul motioned us in another direction. I had only been lightly stung, but J had gotten hit on his ear and his cheek pretty good. I spent the rest of that swim in constant fear of running into more. As were getting out of the water, one of the guys who worked on the boat threw me one of those round, red life tubes to hang on to so I wouldn’t drift too far from the boat. I grabbed on: bluebottle. It got me right across my left hand. Holy cow does it sting.

We sat next to Abdul as the guys on the boat swabbed our wounds with vinegar. “It’s no killing,” Abdul said about the bluebottle. We felt greatly reassured. Abdul told us he got stung on the wrist but he felt it in his armpit. Weird, we said. Then J and I went and sat under the covering to get out of the sun. Soon enough I understood what Abdul was talking about. My armpit started to ache. It reminded me of when I had shingles on my back. Just a nice, dull ache in my left armpit that lasted about half an hour.

By the second dive we were feeling pretty alright again. In the second spot the waves were much rougher. I’m embarrassed to say that it made me seasick. I had to get out of the water. For the rest of the ride I was pretty much in misery: all I wanted to do was curl up back on my little daybed on our deck at Shooting Star. It seemed to take an eternity to get there.

However, I was greatly entertained by another woman on the boat with us. We saw some pretty amazing fish, but this woman was perhaps the most amazing. She seemed to me the happiest, more carefree woman I have ever been around. She had enormous boobs which were barely encased by her white string bikini. She wore her bikini bottom so low you could see the top of her butt crack. She had short blond hair and a huge smile—her teeth were crooked which made her only more attractive. She spoke English with a British accent by way of Russia. Her boyfriend was an old British dude with a pockmarked face who seemed incredibly charmed by everything his girlfriend said. They wore matching oversized Prada sunglasses. The girl asked the brash, large, loud, South African dive master to apply sunscreen to her back while her boyfriend watched from the other side of the boat. Every time the boat stopped, this woman jumped off the back for a swim, laughing the whole while. She had everyone on the boat mesmerized. I loved her.

1 comment:

Simply said...

Those are great pics.