Friday was our last day in Hawaii, and I had already been sick twice: pneumonia on the way over, and whatever the hell this was. But I rallied my broken-ass body to get the fuck out of bed and not waste the gift of tropical paradise, even though I felt like passing out.
So I grabbed this camera, which I’ve had for a year:
the Lumix DMC-TS3, highly recommended
…because I was going to go snorkeling with everybody, and apparently it can go 40 feet underwater. My nephew Sean Patrick showed me how to put the snorkeling gear on, and with all 17 of us in the water or on the beach, I let everything go, and drifted into the water.
Yes, this is all the kind of vacation cliché that could put bees to sleep. But it was my first time snorkeling, and it was absolute rapture. I haven’t been that jazzed by an adventure in years. After 45 minutes, I approached something close to meditation, just floating and flying and bobbing in the water.
For an hour, I forgot I had been sick, I forgot everything, just followed fish around. It conjured up, of all things, deep gratitude.
I’m going to tell you right now, there are way fuckin’ better pictures of fish than these. But I considered it a personal victory that I could function at all, and when my wife met me in the deep water, herself smiling in the mask, I was simply happy to breathe.
a Unicornfish, Butterflyfish of some sort, and a Parrotfish (I think)
Needlefish – these guys were cool
a Pennant Butterflyfish, total showoff
the Orange-Band Surgeonfish
the beautiful and dreamy Tessafish [actually, turns out that’s Michelle – ed.]