Friday, February 24, 2023

Togian islands, days 5-7

Tuesday 2-21 
It's day 5 of the trip and I'm getting into the swing of things. I'm up and ready to go when I hear the singsong "Good Morning" at 6:30am. "Little breakfast is waiting for us: yogurt, fruit, bread. Then comes dive briefing and first dive. We are anchored by the volcano island called Una Una and the first dive is on a pinnacle. You can swim all the way around it at a depth of about 75 feet. We go slow and take about an hour. The site is called fish mania and you could see why. All the same corals we saw at the other sites but add an explosion of fish. Alvin put it well when he said " I never thought my visibility would be compromised because of so many fish."

After the first dive is "big breakfast" - eggs prepared to your specifications, fruit, bacon sausage and more. Then the second dive was right next to the first and with a similar profile. 
I skipped the afternoon dive with the thought that I will go on the night dive at 7.
I finished my book, City of Girls, and decided to read it over again from the beginning with an eye on the authors technique. I liked the book so much I want to pay attention to how she did it. Maybe I can emulate her to write a book about Mom.

I did go on the night dive. It was pretty boring, just over sand, but I was warm and comfortable. Good to know since it has been so long since I've done a night dive. 
Dinner at 8:30? I don't think so. I'm staying in my room and reading.

Wednesday 2-22
The morning dive was a deep dive. I skipped it. Jim and Alvin went, saw some barracuda. I did the second dive. We're still at Una Una. This was a pinacle and it was beautiful. Name of the dive site was Hong Kong.  So many coral, lots of anemones with their Nemo's. Jim got a good photo of me next to one. We learned about an app called Dive+. It knows just how to edit underwater photos for color correction. Wow. It does a great job of getting rid of the green and/or blue cast making the photo look so much better. 

We're leaving Una Una so I made sure to leave some of mom here to dive in this beauty.  
Next dive was a wall at Togean island and of what a wall it was. Taipei wall was the name. Sheer vertical wall down to forever with beautiful gardens on top. I was impressed with the tunicates. 
I'll bet the night dive tonight will be good. Just a feeling. But I'm skipping it. My knee hurts and I just feel the need to pace myself. I am an old lady now y know   I do believe I am the oldest driver on the boat. Not sure how to feel about that. Proud? Sad?

Thursday 2-23 , day 7
Jellyfish Lake. We've done a jellyfish lake before, on our Borneo trip in 1999. I was not expecting to be impressed, but I loved it! The water was 88 degrees, no wetsuit, no fins, just snorkeling. I felt so warm and free. Then looking at those jelly fish and feeling that I must be on mars because they look like little spaceships where the whole ship is involved propulsion. Then, noticing the plethora of them moving  this way and that made me think of the Jetsons and their flying cars. I started looking for George, Jane, and Leroy-I don't remember the daughters name. But they were still little spaceships, not flying cars, so I figured they were on vacation on mars! 

A screenshot from Epcot "Spaceship Earth" - just seems appropriate here!

I understand that jellyfish get nutrients directly from the sun thru photosynthesis. Such evolved creatures, we should learn from them. I thought this would be a quick dive-once you've seen some jellyfish there's nothing more to see, but I loved it. I was one of the last people to get out of the water and I could have stayed longer. 

Second dive was another beautiful wall on an atoll. We went straight down to 75 feet and could have gone to at least 200! I got low on air after 45 minutes. I wanted more time, so I think I'm going to change back to the full size tank. I've been using the smaller 63 cubic inch? Tank because I like the smaller size and I'm good on air. I'm used to coming up with 1000-1200 psi when everyone else is at 500. With this tank, I'm right with them and maybe even less.
Third dive was the wreck of a B24 bomber that crashed in 1942 during world war 2. Awful visibility but still a cool experience.

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