It all started when I was 7 years old. My pop-pop (grandpa) would take me to the beach every week to collect shells. Thats what you do when you grow up in south Florida. One day I came across a shark’s tooth. I asked my mom to take me to the library (no internet back then) to see what type of tooth it was. I quickly learned it was a Tiger Shark. Gorgeous creatures by the way. In no time, I came home with every shark book I could find to learn more. I became a bit obsessed with sharks. NOt much has changed since then. I started to read more and more about Great Whites. As a kid, I had a big love of dinosaurs and of course the T-Rex was my favorite, so it wasn’t hard for me to quickly fall in love with both the Tiger and Great White shark.
Since then, I’ve had dreams of swimming with a Great White. More occasions then not, being told I’m out of my mind, crazy, nuts, stupid. You name it, I’ve been told I am. I am stubborn and never listen. I constantly in the ocean swimming with nurse sharks and touching them when people swim the other way. I can’t help it. I just love all sharks. The way the move is so beautiful and graceful and so powerful. They feel amazing and to feel their muscles as they move is even more breath-taking.
I’ve been wanting to do a Great White shark dive for years but the trip to South Africa or Australia is loooong. Being a Shark Week geek, I never miss an episode and have seen many taking place in Mexico at Guadalupe Islands. I did some research and came across Shark Diver among a few others. I ended up with Shark Diver because the owner, Patrick, was a lot of fun to chat with, actually takes action on helping save the sharks and his package is all-inclusive. I also saw them on Shark Week. I decided that this was the year. I wasn’t going to wait any longer. What better way then to go for my birthday. I couldn’t have thought of a better gift to myself.
When I have told people I’m going on this trip, they look at me like I’ve just told them I have cancer or that I just murdered their pet and then follow with, “I hope you have insurance”, “are you booking a one-way flight”, “are you nuts”, “can we have our files just in case”, ect. I don’t think I’m nuts tho. In fact, I feel that I’m safer there then anywhere else. Sure they are 15feet+ and weighing at 2,000lbs+ but I guess I just never had a fear of sharks. I’ve had a huge respect for them and every single time I dive, I respect that I’m in their element not mine, however I do feel like I should have been born with gills.
This will be a trip of a lifetime for me. Guadalupe Islands is 200 miles of San Diego. The visibility is 80+ with warm waters though I’ll be in a 7mm suit covered head to toe. There will be 11 of us and 2 cages holding 4 each. We will be on the boat for a total of 5.5 days. Never leaving it. I will have no phone, internet or tv and actually looking forward to it. I will tweet and facebook when I can. Look for the hashtag #sharkbait2010 since there is a similiar hashtag going around called #amandafriendnotfood thanks to my friend Elaine.
I can’t wait to meet the others that will be on this trip with me. I have been told we have a few repeaters so that is great. I have also been reading the posts from the attendees from the last few weeks of trips.
Hopefully, you can follow along with me on my days there.
Countdown til I leave: 2.5 days
Happy birthday to me!