I meant to do a little companion piece to Gav’s account of our diving trip, but never got around to it. We have some people from the boat visiting and travelling around Myanmar at the moment, so it jogged my memory! Gav gave you all the details of the actual diving but (in my opinion) not enough of the funny stories, so here goes.
Our boat was a traditional Indonesian junk-all made of wood and looking a lot like a pirate ship. The back area was where we got a suited up to dive, but the front and top were perfectly set up for relaxing and napping in between dives. Near the end of the trip Gavin asked if he could climb up to the crow’s nest and the dive guide let him, after reminding him that our dive insurance would not cover any accidents. No worries, she said, she had a good first aid kit and was good at doing stitches! Gav and another woman made the climb up, no stitches were needed.
Before each dive, there was a quick briefing with a hand-drawn map of the reef and some indications of where we might meet current, etc. Gav started to “enhance” these drawings while the guides were off the boat checking the current-first it was Santa in a canoe on Christmas day and then random drawings of things we wanted to see. See photo above with Gav adding a nice Nudibranch. I’m not sure how much these additions were appreciated, but they were probably appreciated more than the signals that we made up for different fish and then forced our guides to use to point things out. Of particular note was a signal involving some high elbow movements that meant “frog fish.” The guides rolled their eyes at us, but they did use them for us which was hilarious.
We spent all of the trip on the boat, with the exception of Christmas Eve, when we had a bonfire and a BBQ on the beach just near where our boat was anchored for the night. All day the crew were zipping back and forth to take things for the feast. And it was amazing-prime rib and squid and all kinds of other goodies. Wish we had thought to bring some wine with us-the boat only had beer (wine is hard to get in Indonesia apparently). By this point in the trip our group had cleaned out their supply of Bintang (Indonesian beer) and we were left with Heineken, which made us very jealous of the couple who DID bring some red wine for the evening. The offered to share, but it seemed rude since they hauled it all the way from Germany!
Speaking of beer, Gav and I got a little prize at the end of the trip for having the highest bar bill. Someone else got a prize for most beer drunk by a single person, but his partner didn’t like beer really so they didn’t win the overall Best In Show. We got a pair of beer cozies with the ship’s logo on it-not bad. Pictured below on the beach on Christmas Eve.So, not a very typical Christmas but a memorable one!
We are now in the midst of planning out our summer break. It seems far away, but time is flying by at the moment. This past week in particular went super quickly because I am super busy at school at the moment. Lots of classes, had to get next year’s book order in by yesterday and I’m in the middle of weeding the current collection any time I am not doing something else. Someone in years past sure loved ordering diet books and books on how to apply makeup. I hope the monastic school that we donate all our weeded stuff to also enjoy those topics. I finally got around to cleaning some stuff out of my office yesterday and there were catalogues from 2008 in there! This would not be so surprising if it were not for the fact that the library has moved at least twice in that time, so someone packed up that crap and unpacked it again and still did not toss it. Let’s not even get started on the piles of print-outs on how to teach the “World Wide Web” from 1998 and the brand-new (in box) boombox I found.
I had a few interesting encounters with kids this week. One was with a 3rd grade boy who was calling his friends over to see what he was searching for on the library catalogue. I sauntered over to find this:We don’t have that book.
One of the good parts of my job is that I basically can punt these sorts of behaviour issues back to the classroom teacher, so that’s nice. Then yesterday I was reading a story to the Pre-K kids (who are 4). The book ended with a family of a mom, dad and baby having a picnic in their backyard. One kid yelled “babies don’t eat at picnics, they drink from the mommy’s boobies!” Then all the other kids chimed in with “yeah, babies drink from boobies, right Ms. Schubert? Right? Right?” Their teacher was there and didn’t seem fazed so I just said “that’s right.” At what age does saying “boobies” at school become inappropriate? I sure don’t know. I might need some PD on that.
The two incidents reminded me of a time at my last school when I passed by one of the library computers. Someone had left their previous failed search up there and it said “There are no “boobies” in the Mellon Library.” None of us who worked there at the time were particularly well endowed, so we just shrugged and said “kinda true” and laughed.
Finally, the weather here has been glorious for the past two weeks. It’s still mega hot in the middle of the day, but the humidity has gone way down and the nights and mornings are verging on cool! Good thing, because the first morning we got back from Christmas break I went for a run at 5 and came home to check the weather because it was so gross out.
I sent this screenshot to a similarly sweaty friend, using possibly some of those search terms my 3rd grade buddy up there used.
Sorry to all of you who probably want to murder me for complaining about hot weather when you are in a polar vortex. The grass is always greener!