Terror At The Great Barrier Reef Is it Scary or Funny? Bill Harbin Jr.
Our trip to Australia has been wonderful until our fearful day at the Great Barrier Reef. We knew there were a lot of scary sea creatures in the ocean in this part of the world. Also, this was part of the broad area where Steve Irwin was killed by a stingray. In case you do not remember, Steve was a professional wildlife expert that had no fear of adventure on his television show. My wife and I were sailing on an easy snorkeling cruise in that area.
Safety and Health Standards
The Australians are great people, but do not have the same safety and health standards as Americans. While standing in line to snorkel we noticed the group before us threw their masks and tubes in a pile in front of us. The crew members picked them up and handed them to us. When my wife questioned if they were clean, and the question was not answered while the tube and mask was put on us. We wondered who got the snorkel returned by the burly looking guy who was coughing.
We asked for a life jacket that was not within our reach. They told us to jump in the water quickly without it, as people behind us were pushing. The strong current starting pulling us far away from the boat and the others as soon as we jumped in the water. We grabbed on to each other not because we felt loving, but for fear of our lives! The harder we tried to swim the more forceful the water became against us.
Looking down the beautiful fish in a multitude of colors brought temporary solitude. Yet, the boat seemed to be veering farther away from us. Swimming as hard as we could would create bubbles like we had our own propeller. While looking down in this unclear churn of the ocean we either saw or imagined some scary looking creatures lurking with the rainbow assortment of fish. They say the adrenalin created by fear can make regular humans do powerful things. Our swimming at that point could be compared to a speedboat.
We managed to return to the boat and threw our snorkels in the pile for the next germ hungry person to use. The crew served us lunch comprised mostly of fresh fish sandwiches. At that point we felt lucky to be eating a sandwich instead of being one. We have not been snorkeling since that day.