|And we paid money for this? By Diane
We had all decided that since we were near so much water, we probably needed to take some kind of a boat trip.
At the Everglades National Park, we found out that they offered a 2 ½ hour trip into the park for a small amount of $18 per person. So, we quickly drove all the way to the end of the road, 33 miles, and stopped at the Flamingo marina and purchased our tickets. Since we were about 2 hours early for the one o'clock tour, we had lunch and took pictures of the local wildlife. Just before our tour was to start, they announced that the boat was broken and we would have to get a refund.
Two days later, we found ourselves at the Biscayne National Park, and lo and behold, they offer a 2 hour tour, but we were there on a Monday and the tour only runs on Thursday through Sunday. We had missed it by one day.
But, the nice park ranger there, told us that if we were willing to drive another 30 miles, there is a glass bottom boat tour offered at John Pennekamp State Park in Key Largo. There were 3 tours per day, one at 10, another at noon, and the final at three. We called and they had room for us on the noon tour, but we had to hot foot it down there to make it. We all piled back in the truck and off we went. Well, we ran into construction and a traffic jam. There was no way we were going to make the noon boat.
Executive decision, we went back to our rigs, had lunch, walked Rocky, and back into the truck to make the 3 o'clock tour. This time we made it with an hour or so to spare.
What a deal. This tour was a 2 ½ hour reef tour in a glass bottom boat for the low price of $22 per person. We would get to see lots of coral and fishies. My first clue this was not going to be good, was the fact that they recommended Dramamine before we got on the boat. Any one who knows me, knows I get car sick just watching a boat on TV. I came prepared with my Bonine. So, I had taken one before we even left the RV park. In defense, I did offer the others in my party some also, but they all assured me they were good sailors.
I was feeling pretty anxious as we boarded the boat and the first thing they said was that you could purchase Dramamine on board and they recommended everyone who thought they might get sick to take it now. Several of the other folks on board took their advice. None of our group did.
So, we cast off and out through the Mangrove trees and into the Atlantic. Boy, this is pretty cool, what a smooth ride. WRONG! Once we got out to the reef, the swells were 3 - 4 feet and this boat was rocking.
The crew called us all down to the glass bottom part and Bonnie got a great seat with her feet hanging down in the well. I stayed back as I knew I was going to be in trouble. The others in our group found seats or were standing.
The first lecture was on motion sickness and how to recognize the signs. I didn't need to hear it. One look down in that hole with the boat rocking, and I high tailed it upstairs to the outside deck.
As I was leaving the viewing area, I saw Bonnie headed out front. I thought she just wanted to look where we were, but apparently her seat right in the well was making her sick.
I wasn't up top for more than 3 minutes, when I saw Larry's head pop up the stairs. I assured him that I was ok and I would just stay up top for the entire time and he told me he was feeling nauseous and would stay up top with me.
During our 30 minutes over the reef, I saw quite a few heads popping up stairs in various shades of green.
Well, all I can tell you is that on the trip back to the dock, the only one who stayed in to see the coral and fish the entire time was Don. Dick, our navy man, and Gail also ended up in the front of the boat or sitting in the passenger area with their eyes closed, trying to keep it all together.
The descriptions of the fish and coral was broadcast all over the boat, so we can all give you descriptions of what the different fish are supposed to look like, but only Don actually saw them.
I think our boat trips in the ocean are over for the time being.