Adventures of s/v WILD HAIR


Our land life took on form, solidity, routine. We had mastery of a limited set of skills. We had habitual expectations of others and ourselves. Going sailing, we let go of our attachments to our roles, views, and rituals. We persist because we are growing in this shapeless and dynamic world.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

My Spanish Turtle

Off the coast of Culebra in the Spanish Virgin Islands, I slide from the dinghy into the dim, blue scenery. I am at a place divers call “The Wall,” an uninterrupted expanse of coral that breaks the surface only to drop dramatically to a depth of 40 feet. The coral structures are gigantic, pristine. I cannot see an end to the reef. Dave and I stop swimming only when we are too cold to continue, leaving much of the reef unexplored. Heading back to the dinghy, I spy an endangered turtle. Not especially large, her shell is about 18 inches top to bottom. Despite the cold, I make her my pace car and for 20 minutes she and I circle coral clusters and pause for breaths of air at the surface. She sports a numbered tag on the trailing edge of her forward, portside fin. The tag makes me feel fortunate that she and I live in a world where some people nurture the whole of existence.

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