One off the bucket list: The Great Barrier Reef

Fudge.” I cringed as the tiny raindrops hit my cheeks and weirdly, nose tip.

Today is a long awaited trip. It has been sitting somewhere along my long list-of-things-to-do-before-I-die-at-age-50.

Scuba dive.

I had been brushing it off and giving dozen of excuses, that although they made sense, is an act of cowardice. I cannot swim. 

No no. It’s not I’m not a confident swimmer, it is a straight-forward ‘I do not know and cannot swim’.

I guess desperation does push a person – I finally manned up and decided to go ahead. It was legen – wait for it, absolutely extremely fantastically one hell of a time -dary (!)

I was on the verge of not allowed to dive, simply because I cannot blow stupid bubbles under the water without the regulator. *yes, I am that lousy*. I must looked like I was going to cry when I begged for another chance.

I got lucky. One guy must be experienced enough and asked to swim around himself. The other girl couldn’t equalise the ear pressure and had to give up. So, I HAD THE INSTRUCTOR ALL TO MYSELF !!!

The world beneath is quiet. All I could hear was my Darth Vader liked breathing and heartbeat. I honestly do not know how to describe that strange calmness, despite not knowing how to swim.

The sight underneath is magical. The fishes look like they’d just jumped out from cartoons – bursting colours, so lively and so playful. The corals, some looks like they would hurt and some were just soft, slimy and ‘fluffy’. One of them felt like a mermaid’s stuffed teddy. And this other one changes colour (!) – pink to pale pink.Corals

It is a world definitely worth protecting. And I am proud to know that my Marine Biologist sister is doing her part to protect these.

I heard myself squealing from time to time, and then secretly (and stupidly) hope that my instructor did not hear me. And then I repeat again.

Oh, and I kissed Wally. I kissed a fish!!!! Random fact: they are not smelly at all. Wally has this ‘lips’ thicker than Angelina Jolie’s.WallyI think it was a good 20 minutes before we resurfaced. At this point I was already very amazed and in blind loved with my instructor, I couldn’t thank him enough. If it wasn’t for him, my first dive would never be materialised nor would it be that smooth and magical.

“There is a (strangely unexplainable) infatuation with people who, to some extent, hold your life dearly in their hands…” so said by a smarty pants.

Touché. And this just add another ridiculous box to my unrealistic list of traits for potential partner.

That was the main highlight of the day trip. Everything else comes next.

Snorkelling no longer seemed that scary, now that I’ve been deeper. Plus, I had the life vest on 😉 Snorkelling within the designated area was rather congesting, and I didn’t bother to stray far. I gazed now and the Helmet Dive was cutely funny – those Japanese ladies looked like astronauts in water. I saw mermaids/mermen too, swimming so gracefully that their flippers looked like colourful tails.

There are other inclusions: semi-submarine with a very educational presentation, the observatory, and the glass bottom boat.

It was, undeniable, a bewildering experience of the year. The only thing I am unhappy with: I look ugly in all those dive photos 😦

With Wally

At the end of the day, I am proud of myself. Diving was a limit I set for myself, and today it became an achievement. I am glad I pushed myself this far; and I sure am glad I’m somewhat adamant and decided not to listen to everyone else who told me I couldn’t do it. My competitive self proved everyone else wrong again – and I am sadistically happy about that.

If I can do this, I can pull through anything else. I may fall and bleed, cut myself and cry; but after all that, I will pull it through. Conquering fear feels THAT good.

Only those who attempt the absurd can achieve the impossible. – Albert Einstein

And this WAS my impossible. I've been to Cairns