Off Folly Cove

I went diving with my friends Jack and Jane yesterday. When we left the dock, the fog was starting to burn off, but there was still a high overcast. Jack chose to anchor between Lanes Cove and Folly Cove, predicting correctly that we would be sheltered on the northern side of Cape Ann. The water was a smooth as glass.

Perhaps a better simile would be as smooth as a bowl of soup. Whether it was the overcast above, or simply an abundance of plankton below, the visibility was pretty crummy, at only about five feet or so. For the first dive, I was diving with Karen and Rich. For me it was pretty much starfish and sea urchins.

I tried staying pretty close to them most of the dive, but at 25 minutes in, I turned aside for a moment, and immediately lost track of them.  I tried circling around looking for them, I tried swimming into the silt, thinking they’d stirred it up to no avail. Finally, I decided to surface to see if I could see their bubbles, but no such luck. Since Karen had the homing transponder, I decided to call it a dive. When they got back to the boat, they reported seeing some anemones and lobsters.

For the second dive, I went down with Jack and Jane. I’d lost the connector for the strobe at the end of the first dive, so I was just looking this dive, which of course, meant I saw an anemone this time. Most of the time I was just enjoying being neutrally buoyant and looking around, but there wasn’t much to see. I stuck pretty close to Jack and Jane most of the dive, but at the end, I turned my head for literally 3 seconds and they were gone. Fortunately, we were back at the boat.

It was so nice out on the surface – flat and calm, no pitching or rolling, that we just hung out at the surface for a while before heading back. As I was leaving the marina, I noticed the fog starting to settle back in.


Dystopian Future

I spent the weekend at the Boston Sea Rovers 62nd Annual Clinic. Despite the fact that the  the talks were better this year than in the past, they’re not what stuck with me the most. There was a side room of undersea artwork done by middle and high school students on display there, winners of the Bow Seat Ocean Awareness Awards. The quality of the work was truly amazing. Even the works by the younger students showed a degree of control and mastery that I couldn’t have aspired to then. But the thing that was noticeable was that they all dealt with pollution, and the ways we’re mistreating the planet. It was so consistent I had to ask about it, and in fact, that was the theme of the contest. And it made me sad.

It is true that I have seen things that will disappear by the time they’re my age. It is true that they will have to deal with the consequences of a rising ocean. It is undeniable that humanity has not been a proper steward of the oceans.

And yet, I feel doom and gloom is the wrong thing to be teaching kids. There is so much that is awe inspiring about the oceans, even today. The whole show, especially the film festival last night, is a testament to the beauty and wonder of the seas, and I would rather have kids exposed to that first, before being weighted down with the threats to the planet. I want them to see the wonders first, because if they learn to love the ocean, the desire to conserve it will come naturally.

Bonaire 2016 Pictures: Friday


This gallery contains 9 photos.

Friday marked the last day of diving. In the morning, Ralph, the Quinnans, Debie and I revisited Aquarius, because of its easy sandy entry. Interestingly enough, possibly due to Barbara making me more aware of them, I saw a ton … Continue reading

Bonaire 2016 Pictures: Thursday


This gallery contains 24 photos.

Thursday started with a pair of boat dives. For me, the first one was kind of embarrassing, as I burned through my air and was the first one back on the boat. The second one was actually pretty productive, as … Continue reading

Bonaire 2016 Pictures: Wednesday Afternoon


This gallery contains 23 photos.

Wednesday was a full day. In the morning we did a shore dive at Weber’s Joy, and got banged around quite a bit coming out of the water. Instead of a second dive, Paul took us on a tour of … Continue reading

Bonaire 2016 Pictures: Tuesday


This gallery contains 18 photos.

Tuesday morning we drove to the north to a site called “Oil Slick Leap”. The site is set on a cliff of about 8 feet, and you can either climb down a ladder, or jump off the cliff into the … Continue reading