Snorkeling – Turkey Point – 82

Turkey Point is located right on the Eastern Coast of Southern Florida. You might think that diving at a nuclear plant would be nuts, and I would be forced to agree with you. It was my weirdest single dive, ever.

The dive was actually very boring. We were only in about 4 feet of water. Yeah, you COULD just walk around. Plant life was very sparse and there were very few fish. Pretty much just a day of floating around half asleep.

Now there WAS one thing, the water itself. The only way I can explain it is that it looked like 7-up without the carbonation. There was a visual distortion to the water, but that was it.

At one point, there is a deep canal dug into the shore to allow tanker ships to float right up to the nuclear plant. I am floating by in that 4 foot deep water when suddenly the sand falls away sharply beneath me, into darkness. I have suddenly lost all points of reference. I glace around quickly and find the edge of the sand and swim for it, feeling like I was going to fall into the darkness at any instant. The four feet deep water feels much safer to me.

As I am swimming along the edge of this canal, I am approached by a tiny fish. He has seen himself in the reflection from my mask. Now this is a teeny tiny fish, but it is less than an inch from my mask. He is beautifully colored and I was surprised by the detail. We stare at each other for a while.

Then he decides he doesn’t like having such a good looking rival in his territory, and attacks his reflection. It catches me by surprise and I wave him away like a fly. He strikes again and again and again. I can feel the impact as he hits my mask, but he is so tiny, it really has no effect. But it IS unnerving, and the tiny little fish drives away his rival as I retreat. lol

I am swimming/floating back towards our start point. This dive is pretty much a bust and I am just killing time enjoying the water and the sun on my back (with my shirt ON). Quiet. Peaceful. Relaxing. I am just watching the bottom slide by as I drift effortlessly above.

I am jolted from my daydreams by a pair of black hands reaching up from beneath the sand below me! I attempted to swim higher, OUT of the water. The hands kept getting larger and larger as the sand fell away from them, reaching higher and higher towards me! By now I was flailing in the water and screaming obscenities into my snorkel! What the heck?!?!?!

The hands suddenly flashed downward, and a large manta ray slid out from under the sand! Another flip of his “hands”, now obviously his “wings”, and he disappeared from view. Holy Crap! I thought I was about to be eaten by some nuclear mutant living in the sand!

I was ready to go now. We never did go back there, too boring. lol

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