I had come to an island that was quiet, had a nice stretch of sand, plenty of sunshine, but best of all I would be staying put for six days diving one of the most pristine environments in The Philippines. I was eager to get back into the water and take one last series of plunges into the blue depths of the ocean. I love the alien world the seas provide and the zero gravity environment being underwater allows me to have to explore it. Getting certified way back in Colombia to scuba dive in what has now become seven different countries around the world is one of the best things I have ever done. As an added thrill Malapascua Island just happens to be home to the mighty Thresher Shark. I had come to seek them out on their own turf. I paid a more for the diving here than I wanted ($55 a shot) but the equipment was good and for the first time I was provided an underwater camera, and the memories are sure to last a lifetime.
Scuba diving is such a thrill anytime you go under the water. It is a very solitary sport as
obviously you cannot talk to anyone whilst swimming around and I enjoy that aspect of it. It is peaceful. The multitude and diversity of life in our world's oceans never ceases to amaze me. Throughout the week I did a few different dives. We went to one site called Gato Island about an hours ride away for Malapascua. The coral walls here were extremely colorful and reminded me of some of the beauty I saw on Pulau Bunaken in Indonesia. Here at Gato Island I also had a first. We were able to spot a Sea Horse amongst the grasses on the bottom. I've always wanted to see one of these little guys and I could not believe my luck when he popped up his little yellow head.
We also stumbled across a pair of Frog Fish. These guys are so well camouflaged that it took me a few minutes to actually realize what I was looking at. Curious little creatures that are very shy and very sly at avoiding predators. It is so special to be able to share the environment with the fishes. Something I'll never take for granted and something I hope I will have the
opportunity to do again in the near future. During my week on Malapascua Island I was a little sad knowing that it would be a long time before I would be next to the ocean again, let alone diving in it.
Outside of the dives on the island I got into a nice little routine of laying on the beach in the afternoons listening to music, sitting in the sun, and reading my book. Lazy days indeed, but this was the exact spot I was looking for to close out my time on the islands. A little action in the mornings and some R&R in the afternoons can never get old.
The morning of the Thresher Shark dive I was full of anticipation and excitment. I was just crossing my fingers that we would be able to view these amazing creatures in the wild. No guarantees here in the ocean that they would show up. I was up at 4:00am for the 4:30am departure on the dive boat. By 5am we were in the water. We dove down 30m to a place called the Monad Shoal where the sharks congregate. We saw about four different sharks swimming about
and I think they were as curious about us as we were of them. I was never scared or nervous. Everything was in control and Threshers (like most all sharks) aren't really a threat to humans. I was overwhelmed by just exactly where I was at and what I was witnessing and was able to shoot a great video of these proprietors of the deep. A beautiful dive and a great way to cap off all the dives I've been able to do on this epic holiday.
So like all things recently; it feels as I blinked my eyes and just like that my three weeks in The Philippines had come to an end. I don't really want to go into the boring details of my exit from this country, but let's just say I really hate air travel. It is the worst form possible when going from point A to point B. But as we all know it is a necessary evil. A couple of flights, a lot of delays, and a few overnighters in strange terminals and I made it to Hong Kong where I plan to go out with a bang.
"Every single day, every
nine to five
Everybody works it hard, but then we finally die
And there's no remorse, or the slightest sound
We're forever cool with the way it all breaks up and down.
Let's start a riot
Life's just a game
It's just one epic holiday
However far this
Takes us along
Take us away
It's just one epic holiday."
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