Thursday, January 10, 2013

A Great Day Turned Tragic

Earlier this week, we decided to take it easy one afternoon and enjoy a little midday swim in the ocean. It is summer, after all. We made the trek down to the wharf and were pleasantly surprised to see some kids and a couple families doing the same. The family was planning a "kai tunu" (a barbeque) on the beach, and to prepare for this, the dad took his spear gun out to catch some fish, and a few other folks were diving for shellfish. I've been bummed lately that I haven't gotten to do any fishing yet, so I decided to run back home and get my snorkel gear, in the hopes of tagging along. When I got back, the dad was long gone with his spear, so I joined in the search for shellfish. Those of you who know me know that I love seafood, so I was so excited to give it a try.

Starting out was frustrating. I didn't really know where to look and what to look for, so it took me about twenty minutes to find my first shellfish. Alissa was done swimming and headed home, but I, determined to keep trying, decided to stay. As time progressed, I slowly got better at knowing what to look for and where to dig, and after about an hour, I had covered quite a bit of ground, and had pockets full of about twenty mussels and clams.

Feeling quite accomplished and proud of myself, I headed to shore to examine my loot. As I finished clearing my pockets and checking out my spoils, I noticed something that quickly quenched my happiness and excitement - my wedding ring was not on my finger. We do try to remember to take them off before we swim, but we do admittedly forget sometimes. To put it lightly, I started freakin out, searching frantically in the sand, hoping that it had just fallen off as I was taking everything out of my pockets. But much to my dismay, it became clear that my ring was now resting somewhere unknown within the Nuapapu coral reefs. The Tongans offered to help me look, but I knew it was a futile task, having covered so much ground over the last hour. So, devastated and in tears, I headed back home to tell Alissa the news. Sad, sad day...the shellfish were delicious, but were certainly not worth the price it took to get them.

- Mark

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