Snorkeling and The $50 Beach Chair

Otherwise known as a typical day in Hawaii.

The water here has so many different shades of blue. There’s the deep dark purple-blue that tells you there’s no bottom in sight. There’s the crystalline clear that lets you see all the rocks, coral, sand and toes in desperate need of a pedicure. And then there’s that turquoise blue – the kind that tells you you’re in paradise. It’s a shade of blue that practically begs you to jump in and see what you can see.

So we did.

Anaeho’omalu Bay – one of our many snorkel sites

It helped that there was a snorkel gear rental place a stone’s throw away from our condo. The prices were reasonable at 11 bucks a day for snorkel and fins, we splurged and got the $4 a day beach chair too. After all, since one of us is constantly on gremlin duty we only needed one set. Bargain!

We drove a whopping five miles to the Kahalu’u Beach Park where the snorkeling was good. We started unpacking. A day at the beach with a baby is quite an endeavor. Tent, towels for the tent, towels for under the towels, towels to dry off with, sunblock, sun shirt, sun hat…no Vitamin D for our baby, thanks. Plus the rented beach chair, snorkel gear, dry clothes for baby, extra dry clothes for baby just in case. All for a whopping 1.5 hours at the beach (shhhh! We didn’t know that part then!).


Zeke is thrilled with all of our beach gear

We take turns snorkeling and are immediately immersed in the magical world that is under water. Tons of fish, sea turtles, coral, just so much life!

A side note about sea turtles:

The sea turtle is an endangered species and is afforded special protections by the government. There are signs everywhere telling folks to not touch or otherwise harass sea turtles that they see. I’m sure you can guess where this is headed. I’m peacefully snorkeling, in awe of the life I see around me. I have to trust that any time anyone encounters a sea turtle a certain sense of amazement descends over you and you count yourself lucky to be in the presence of an endangered animal in their own habitat.

Apparently there are others in the world who aren’t quite satisfied with that. I refer to them as Neanderthals and Haters of All That Is Still Beautiful In Our World. (NHATISBOW for acronym, “Nhats” for short).

As I’m watching this beautiful sea turtle go about their business, a Nhat and her Nhat offspring swim next to me. Cool, I think, sharing this experience with a few other folks. Nope.

These idiots swim right up to the sea turtle and proceed to try and touch it. Surely, I think, surely these idiots won’t continue to try and touch this animal that has numerous signs around the beach telling you not to.

Well shit. There they go, a couple of Nhats bothering this awesome creature by rubbing their disgusting Nhat-y hands all over it.

So I grab their legs and yank as hard as I could away from the sea turtle.

The look of surprise and slight shame on their faces told me everything. They knew what they were doing was wrong. I popped my head up as they surfaced and scolded them. Reminded them they could be fined $200 for touching a turtle (truth) and told them not to. Then, to be sure, I stared them down in and out of the water, until they swam away.

Protector of sea turtles. That’s the imaginary badge I like to think I earned that day. It’s gonna look pretty sweet on my old brownie sash.

Ahem….so back to the majesty and magic of snorkeling…



Snorkeling masks are nothing if not majestic

Zeke had a ball while we took turns snorkeling. He played in the water, laughing at every wave, and enjoyed picking up rocks and splashing around with us. We decided to call it a day as the sun started sinking lower and Zeke turned decidedly more gremlin-ish as bed-time approached. We re-packed our lives and rinsed off as much sand as we could while holding our beach belongings.

Have you ever tried to rinse off while holding a slippery squirming gremlin-baby? It’s tough. Things get dropped (getting re-sandy), things get set down, and things get left behind.

Like that cheap, add-on $4 beach chair (with a hefty replacement fee).

When those things happen you almost never realize it until the following day when you’ve called the rental place to re-rent your snorkel gear and chair because you had such a good time with it. In fact, you probably don’t realize it until much later that day when you’re unpacking at the next beach and see that you’re missing a chair.

And that’s how we bought a $50.00 beach chair.

We won’t be bringing it home.

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  1. Mandy, I love reading your blog! I can envision being on the beach and snorkeling just from your words! I’ve never actually been snorkeling but can almost say I have now! Your pictures are gorgeous too! Oh the memories of taking a baby to the beach (sigh) – I’d do it all over again! And thank you for standing up for the sea turtles! Why can’t people follow the rules (and in this case – laws)???? Keep blogging my dear….keep blogging!

  2. Mandy, love your story about the sea turtle! You go Brownie Girl! I’m gonna find my sash and we’ll wear them next time we’re together!!!! Thanks for the story and the laugh, $50 beach chair, we’ve all bought one, right!! Xo

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