Saturday, July 17, 2010

Ahhhh, Paradise.

As planned, I took today off and went with Eddie and some friends to Komaka Island for a day of snorkeling, slothery, and general shenanigans. Being a beautiful Saturday in the middle of July, there were a decent number of people there. Maybe fifty, give or take. Still, plenty of room on the beach and in the water. Not surprisingly, we only saw one other American.

Naturally, we took eleventy billion pictures, both above and below the water.

There was some adult supervision, but no lifeguard on duty apparently:
Setting up camp before throwing ourselves to the fish:
George, getting a little enthusiastic with the sunscreen:
The bathroom, which is the only permanent structure on the island besides the rickety lifeguard thingy:
Sad to report the bathroom looked pretty decent from the outside, but according to Elisa, the inside was a very, very different story. I chose not to verify.

We wandered around the tiny island a bit, playing in the caves and taking pictures. Here is a banyan tree, which are everywhere on Okinawa and, apparently, Kokama. For those of my loyal blog minions who are tuning in from the Pacific Northwest, the bright object at the top of the picture is called "the sun." It is a natural phenomenon in this part of the world. There is no need for alarm.
Inside one of the caves:
In this area, it's a safe bet that if you wander into a cave, you will find a shrine. This cave was no exception:
One of the beaches:
"They see me rollin'..."
James, personifying the word "dignity"...
Enough of that nonsense. I said this was a snorkeling trip, we came armed with an underwater camera, and therefore it is time to show you pictures from our snorkeling shenanigans.

You know it's going to be a damned good swim when you put your face in the water and immediately see this:
These fish have absolutely no fear. This one was quite large and followed us all over the place:
See? No fear at all. And yes, that is me in the upper left...
Okay, so most of them had no fear...
We saw tons of crazy colorful fish...
And some not so colorful fish...
Prepare for Finding Nemo flashbacks:
We're not sure if this was an eel or a sea snake...I think it was an eel....
As I swam along in some of the deeper water, I saw something moving. Giving it a second look, I realized - to my great delight - that it was a moray eel.
A roughly 6-foot moray eel, to be precise...
Now. I happen to be fascinated by these creatures. I also know they can be quite aggressive and have a nasty bite. So, when you're floating at the surface, and there's a 6-foot pissy-looking moray eel with sharp pointy teeth about 12-15 feet below you, what should you do?

Of course, there's only one option.

Grab the camera from one's husband, dive down, and get right in that fucker's face:
Of course, with a heavy current, natural buoyancy, and having a camera in one hand, it took a few tries to actually get a decent picture.

This was one of the outtakes:
Mouthy little bastard.

At the end of the day, we dried off, shook the sand out of our clothes, and headed home. I think this picture of Elisa, Eddie, and James pretty much sums up how we all felt by this point:
It was a long, long day, but we had an awesome time. We're definitely going back to Komaka Island, quite possibly to camp out.

It was also the day off I desperately needed from writing, even if my main character did come marching into my brain mid-swim and inform me of a few things he'd neglected to tell me about one scene. *sigh* One day off. Just one. Fucking. Day. Is that really too much to ask?

Do it again, Scott, and I'll feed you to the eel...


  1. Really? From the body shape I would have said it was an eel. My science teacher had one similar that was called a snowflake eel.

  2. Yup! Really! Sea snakes aren't 'round' like snakes you find on land. They have that flattened look. That's definitely a sea snake. Saw one on north Australian coast.