Tuesday, October 19, 2004

There's nothing like being under pressure

During our one week stay, we only did two boat dives: Sadana point, a rather disappointing steep sloping wall, and later on, just to make at least one more boat dive, Green gardens, a beautiful hard coral reef - that is, if you can find it without breefing. The wind caused waves made the boat rides, although not very long, not very pleasant either.

So we ended up choosing for the house reef in stead, diving it 10 times, including 2 night dives, and appreciating it more each time.

The beach entrance with its sand slope is a great place for lazy crocodilefish, just lying on the bottom while waiting for a meal to present itself to them, scorpion fish blending in with the corals and pretending not to be there, lionfish resting underneath overhangs, flounders and blue-spotted stingrays.


The left side has very nice hard corals, with pairs of masked butterfly fish slowly swimming around here and there, but there's more marine life on the right side, where we saw schooling fish like fuseliers and sergeant-majors, a big barracuda getting its teeth cleaned for a more snappy bite later on, a turtle minding its own business and a squad of seven squids hanging out in the blue, performing -at a safe distance- a little razzle dazzle show of changing colors and threathening postures.


During our night dives, we saw two small cuttlefish, getting pretty upset with us trying to take a picture of them, a few shrimps, lots of long spined sea-urchins and crabs decorated with anemones according to the latest fashion, unless of course it's just for camouflage and self-defense. All the while with an escort of two not-to-be-pushed-away lionfish, using our lights to successfully hunt by, thus having adopted the frequent intrusions of divers to their advantage. Twice I guiltily witnessed the swallowing of small out-of-luck fish by the bigger fellow - thereby making me, I confess, an accomplice to cold-blooded feeding.

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