Unfortunately, I have been out of the water for the past four days with an ear infection. Waiting for it to heal, I have been thinking about my last dive every day, anxiously anticipating the next time I get to enter the water. after completing the Open Water course, I went straight into the Advance Open Water course (extra training that will allow me to dive up to 100 ft). Through this course we focused on 5 specialties: Perfecting Buoyancy, Underwater Navigation, Night Diving, Deep Water Diving, and Underwater Naturalist. While I did have my fun in each one, it is in the night dive that was my last and most impactful.
Just as the sun dipped under the horizon, we hopped on the boat and headed out. Flashlights in hand, we each jumped into the water and let the small beams guide us as we explored— first a coral wall, then a wrecked boat and all the beautiful life growing upon it. We saw a whole different array of creatures— crabs and sleeping parrotfish. We made our way to a small patch of sand where we all knelt down in a huddle. Holding each other’s arms, we buried our flashlights into the sand and let the darkness fully surround us. As we sat there, letting our eyes adjust, small flashes of blue light started to swarm. Waving her hands, Red, one of our instructors, activated the bioluminescent dinoflagellates in the water arounds us. It was then that I started to look around at the city coming to life around us. Just above the coral, like icicle Christmas lights, strings of pearls were lighting up. It is hard to even describe the experience. The only word I can think of that comes close is, simply, breathtaking.
We lifted our flashlights, just in time to see a tiny 2 inch flounder swim away, and slowly made our way to the surface and onto the boat. By now, the light was completely gone and all the stars were out. With such a clear sky, you could even see the clouds of the milky way. As the boat drive forward, it kicked up water and the bioluminescent life with in like a streak of little shooting stars, perfectly mirroring the dancing lights above. Breathtaking.
I know I have to wait to dive again. I know the next time I enter this world will feel like the first gasp of air after holding your breath. I miss the water. I miss exploring. Wish my ear all of the healing.