8.30.2008

Molokini Magic

We are in Maui on our first official "family vacation" since having Alex, and everything is going fabulously. Today Nick and I went diving (Alex stayed with a delightful French nanny from the Nanny Connection). I was really really nervous the entire day before, since this is my first dive in three years, and my first dive below 20 feet. Luckily, 20 feet deep in Monterey Bay -- where I'd done all my diving thus far -- is actually (as far as I can tell) harder than 80 feet in Maui. The descent and ascent are definitely more challenging because of the additional pressure on your ears. But with 100 feet of visibility, it's hard to feel too claustrophobic or fearful, and our guide, Matt from Prodiver Maui, was completely attentive and helped me feel very confident and secure that everything would be fine. And despite having practiced clearing my mask (where you open your mask underwater to flush out water that's seeped in) ad nauseum the day before while we were snorkeling, I didn't have any problems down below and really didn't have to touch it. I'd been incredibly stressed out that I might have to do that at 60 feet (the lowest I planned to go on the dive) so I wanted to make sure I could do it. But the boat guys made sure my mask had defogger and was fitting properly, and nothing happened to disrupt the seal during the dive, so thankfully I didn't have to test my mask-clearing skills at depth. 

What was amazing was how before I knew it I was down at 80 feet, enjoying the scenery, breathing comfortably, and being really, really, really proud of myself for not letting fear get the best of me. First thing in the morning, when I'd woken up, I was considering canceling the dive out of total paranoia. As we were driving to Kihei in the Maui morning darkness, "Spirit in the Sky" came on the radio and I honestly thought it was sign that something was going to go horribly wrong on the dive. I knew that was a crazy thought, but that's what partaking in adventure sports will do to an overthinker. Luckily, every other song on the radio was harmless -- that helped me chill. It also helped that I knew I was prepared, having reviewed my dive book meticulously the day before. I was diving with one of the best outfits in Maui. I had spent a few days in the water snorkeling, getting familiar with my gear again and just orienting myself. And really, who lets fear keep them from doing cool stuff? Not me! 

(For the record, I wasn't crazy enough not to notice that "Spirit in the Sky" is a really cool song with awesomely simple-sounding composition and production. And it's by a guy named Norman Greenbaum. Good for Norman Greenbaum for not changing that name. And according to Wikipedia, he lives in Petaluma! Wikipedia sure is handy.)

The resort where we're staying, the Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas, is a very family-friendly place -- there are children everywhere, so we haven't once felt like Alex was bothering anyone's quiet, contemplative moment. We did have the typical arrival snafu, when they tried to stick us in basically the worst room in the resort and then were largely impervious to any requests for legitimate customer service (more on that later -- Expedia is to blame as much as Westin and they'll both be hearing from us). But it's great having two rooms plus a kitchen and balcony (and washer/dryer!), and Alex loves the kiddie pool. Plus, the beach is steps away, with gentle, warm water and fantastic snorkeling. We've having a pretty great time.

Plus, did I mention I went scuba diving to 80 feet?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

well, i'm impressed with the 80 foot dive. tell us more about what you saw down there.