Bimini 2016: Day 3 – Dolphins spotted! (Also, spotted dolphins)

Yesterday was my first time snorkeling since I was probably six years old. While we didn’t have good luck finding dolphins, it was good to start getting acclimated to the water before trying to trying to photograph them. (Not that I felt particularly prepared, just more experience than zero.)

The other thing I didn’t mention in yesterday’s post… motion sickness. I’d listed ginger pills and/or Dramamine as things to pack, but I hadn’t gone further than that in the narrative. Knock on wood, I’ve never vomited from motion sickness before. Yesterday was the closest I’ve ever gotten, however, and several people were not so fortunate. It made for a rough start to the week.

Also: I mentioned that you should reapply sunblock on schedule. Yeah, pay close attention to where your hands, feet, and other body parts rub against clothing or parts of the boat, and reapply frequently. I didn’t take any pictures, but you’ll have to trust me when I say that the backs of my hands, down to the first knuckle, were reddish-purple from sunburn. It wasn’t pleasant.

So, with that to set the scene, it’s time to head back out to look for dolphins again. The formula remained the same. Early morning yoga (for those who could roust themselves at 7:30), breakfast, packing lunch boxes, and a bit of time to relax before heading out around 11:30.

Our first stop was Shell Beach, not too far from the channel we pass through to reach the west side of the islands. As you can imagine, it was named this because of the large number of shells you can find on the beach. Shocking, I know.

So, after a rough first day on the boat, it was time to get back in the water and face fears and sunburn again. This is how we grow.

This is me, getting ready to swim to shore, and questioning life decisions. (Atmoji Photography)

This is me, getting ready to swim to shore, and questioning life decisions. (Atmoji Photography)

One small snag. The water today was… occupied.

I’ve taken photos of jellyfish in captivity from time to time, but there was always a thick piece of glass between me and them.

This time, it was a lot closer, and much more personal. And there were a whole lot of them.

 (Warren Schultz)

Moon jellyfish. Lots and lots of them. (Warren Schultz) Buy this photo


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Bimini 2016: Day 2 – WildQuest, and Learning to Snorkel

Ok, big day. Time to grab a charter flight out to Bimini, and do this thing. (Snorkeling, specifically)

So, here’s the snag. I had a near-drowning incident when I was young that I don’t really recall, but I’ve had mixed feelings about being in water where I couldn’t put my feet on the ground as long as I can remember. But hey, if I can face acrophobia and stand on top of a mountain in the Alps (and take photos), I can handle this, right?
Time to find out.

When we were told to pack for the flight, one of the restrictions is 40 lbs total, per person. Total. My photo bag weighs that much when I’m fully kitted out, and that doesn’t include clothes. I was pretty sure that meant puddle-jumper prop plane.

I wasn’t wrong.

Britten Norman Islander, operated by Island Air Charters (Warren Schultz)

Britten Norman Islander, operated by Island Air Charters (Warren Schultz)Buy this photo

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Europe 2015: Day 1.1 – Dinner in Oslo – Bacchus

We met up with our local hosts for the evening, friends of my travel partner’s family for years, and headed off to dinner.

This is what’s great about visiting locals on this sort of trip. Odds are, I never would have selected this restaurant out of all the choices in Oslo. It wasn’t near the hotel, it didn’t seem to have anything that stood out in particular in reviews… but I would have been missing out.

Cafe Bacchus has some phenomenal food in a comfortable atmosphere. This was the menu the night we went:

The menu of Bacchus Cafe the week I was in Oslo. Notice the allergen warning key listed at the bottom. I'll come back to that. (Warren Schultz)

The menu of Bacchus Cafe the week I was in Oslo. Notice the allergen warning key listed at the bottom. I’ll come back to that. (Warren Schultz)

Normally, I don’t go for fish at restaurants. I can appreciate good fish, but my past experience has taught me that cooking fish perfectly involves a bit of art. Bacchus clearly has been practicing their art.