Unwanted Company

The day dawns overcast. High winds and rain are predicted for later this afternoon and tomorrow. We are happy to be on a mooring ball in a relatively protected spot. We do get some surge coming through but it is quite tolerable.

We run the genset to charge the batteries and make water. By lunchtime we decide to do some snorkeling. The poor weather in the days to come will likely prevent it so we throw our gear in the tender and head for Emerald Rock, a short distance from our mooring. We tie up to a mooring ball at the reef and put on our fins, mask, etc. We see the coral is clustered in a circular area no larger than 40 feet across. As we begin our circumnavigation of this small reef we begin to see them. Hundreds of bright tropical fish hover over the reef and nestle among the coral. Every type of fish you might see in a salt-water aquarium and then some. They are quite tame and come right up to see you. We circle the reef and I’m thinking this will be a fantastic opportunity to hover over the reef and take our time observing the abundant life.

Suddenly, out of the corner of my eye a shape emerges. Shark. Big shark. 8 feet at least. It looks mean too. Probably a reef shark. Lots of sharp teeth and a remora clinging to its chin. Suddenly, we decide we like being at the top of the food chain and not somewhere else on the list. We climb back into the tender and call it a day. We weren’t there 15 minutes; but what an experience. We will have to go back; hopefully without the unwanted company.

As we head back the ominous black clouds roll in from the west. No sooner than we set foot back on Tivoli the rain comes down in torrents. The wind picks up to 25 knots, gusting to 30. Tivoli wanders about on her lines and rocks a bit in the swell but is quite comfortable. All afternoon and well into the evening the winds and rain persist. The good news is the downpour is washing the salt off Tivoli.

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