Author: Lacie Pierre
My desire to dive began while snorkeling in Mexico’s Cabo Pulmo National Marine Park. It was beautiful, but snorkeling was restrictive and I needed to get closer.
Several months later I traveled to the island of Utila, Honduras to learn to dive. I’ll never forget my first breath underwater, the time it took to get used to that feeling, and the patient dive masters that were so supportive when the panic set in. The view meters below the surface, knees on the sandy bottom, and looking up. After taking the course, I realized so much can go wrong, but so much can go so amazingly great. For me, diving, is an outlet to enjoy and explore the precious gift of water in a more intimate way. The possibility of discovery excites me, but at what expense?
My journey to Utila and its waters proved to be more important than the destination itself. My trek to the Honduran bay island included stops in some of the world’s most dangerous cities via progressively more dangerous transportation methods. Between San Pedro Sula, La Ceiba, and Utila the plane passenger size gradually decreased to 5.
The worry among the 5 of us was evident as we crossed the sea: 5 passengers, 1 pilot and 1000 lbs over the weight maximum – hyperbole but definitely not FAA compliant. Important to note, my dad is a private pilot and I usually have a high tolerance for smaller air crafts but #NotToday!
My fear reached new heights when the pilot took a call mid flight over the Caribbean Sea. Squished in the cockpit next to the him, I gave him my best side eye coupled with an eye roll to which he quickly returned with a piercing glare.
So what does this have to do with water? My journey over water to get below it caused me to truly reflect on my personal limits and evaluate risk when I travel, especially alone. Water tested my limits, how far are any of us willing to go in pursuit of a dream or goal.
FYI – I shamelessly opted to return to the mainland via ferry. I strongly suggest a Port Royal, a Honduran Beer, to calm nerves (before) after such experiences.