Sunday, August 19, 2012

...distressed fish

I don't remember very much technical information from my years of watching shark week. I mostly just remember watching a series of great whites jumping out of the ocean and eating seals. But I have a vague memory of knowing that sharks can sense when a fish is in distress. Or panicked? Or flailing around? Maybe there was a show I watched where there was a dummy floating in the water and the shark didn't care about it, but when it started flailing around—the shark attacked. I could be making this up. Like, I said—I can't remember.

So this morning when I was swimming out to the buoy, I was chanting my normal ocean-swim mantra: There are no sharks here. The chances of you getting eaten by a shark are very slim [except, the man who was eaten a few years ago at a nearby beach] If there are sharks, they won't eat you. Despite that man who got eaten, it won't happen to you. I was actually pretty relaxed. I was pretty convinced there were no sharks.



I was about 20 feet from the buoy. And off to the right: a dorsal fin.

[!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!] IN REAL LIFE

It wasn't a bird, a boat, another swimmer, a weird light/shadow thing. It was huge dorsal fin. And it was close to me.

Dear readers,

I SWAM FOR MY LIFE EXCEPT YOU CAN'T SWIM FOR YOUR LIFE IN THE OCEAN!
(You don't really go anywhere.)

Sensing my lack of actual movement, knowing the shark could probably see my infrared panic AND my distressed heartbeat, I actually turned around and stopped swimming to see if I was about to get eaten.

I SAW THE DORSAL FIN AGAIN! GOING IN A DIFFERENT DIRECTION!

It was at this point that somewhere inside my distressed flailing body, I realized it might be a large, dark dolphin or small whale. The second time I looked, it was just sort of hanging out on the surface—which is definite whale/dolphin behavior. But the fin was very large and black.

I honestly don't know what it was. It was probably a small whale, right? 


3 comments:

  1. that's like the last thing you want to see during shark week.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Nothing would be more scary to me!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Scary, scary, scary!! My heart is racing right now for you.

    ReplyDelete

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