Sharkbait: Hoo Ha Ha!

"Hey, you keep talking about all these water activities in Maui.  

What about sharks?"

Should you be worried about sharks?  Not even a little.  I'm not saying they aren't there or that you aren't entering their domain when you step into the ocean.  What I am saying, is don't let it keep you from doing anything.  Shark attacks are extremely rare.  By averages, fatal attacks are almost nonexistent.  Here are some of the things you're more likely to die from; Deer, Vending Machines and Falling Coconuts.

Now, I haven't always been this brave.  Misinformation had me over-thinking it too.  Last year we were getting our Scuba certification in Lahaina.  Our instructor told us we were going to a place with a lot of sea life.  "You'll see octopus, squid, eels, sharks, sea turtles...."

"Back up a sec," I interrupted.  "Sharks!?"  "Sure," he said.  He must have had a good laugh to himself when I asked, "Tell me why I shouldn't be terrified?"

 

So, there we were, diving the Mala Pier in Lahaina.  This pier was partially destroyed by Hurricane Iniki in 1992.  Thanks to a contractor, who thought it would be a good idea to mix the cement for the pillars and platforms with seawater.  Seawater + Rebar = Bad.

 

So now, the fallen pillars and platforms have made a nice manmade reef.  As promised, there were a large array of sea creatures.  Almost immediately, our dive master led us to the sharks.  Oh yeah, man-eaters.  Well, not exactly.  6 foot White-Tip Reef Sharks aren't man-eaters.  But, they could give you a nasty bite, I'd imagine.  Anyway, if you ask anyone who knows me they'll tell you, I always have to be first.  No different here.  I was trying to line myself up in the best angle to video these monsters of the deep.  In my haste to get into position, I failed to see the concrete pillar in close proximity to my shin.  Ouch.  I looked down to see if the bone was sticking out of the skin.  Not even a scratch.  Huh.  I know I felt it.  Whatever, there were sharks!  I didn't realize I really did anything to it until we were standing on the shore afterwards.  "What the hell did you do to your leg?" Heidi asked me.  It was now bleeding.  I guess the pressure at 40 feet didn't let it bleed as much.  Probably a good thing with those carnivores nearby.  

 

Later that evening, Ron and I were celebrating our scuba certification with a beer down at the hot tub with some other vacationers.  We were all exchanging our stories about what we did that day, what we were doing tomorrow, when someone noticed my injured leg.  They asked, "Oooh, what happened to your leg?"  

Matter-of-factly I answered,

"Shark."

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