Saying Yes

When I added #8 to my Personal 9 Month Bucket List ~ Say yes to something I normally wouldn’t, I wasn’t sure how this item would play out. It’s open-endedness leaves lots of possibilities, but I believe I fulfilled it yesterday.

I went whale watching in a small boat on 9 ft. seas.

Not that I’m against whales. I’m fascinated by “nature red in tooth and claw” and love a chance to see animals in the wild. And I love being on the ocean. I hardly feel like I’m on vacation unless we’re on a cruise ship.

No, the problem was the smallness of the craft and the 9 ft seas.

Despite my love of cruising, I’m terribly prone to motion sickness, which I combat with those little scopalamine patches. As a kid, I always started our family car trips with early morning bouts of nausea in the back seat because my dad wanted to drive to a certain restaurant in a town about 100 miles away before we stopped for breakfast. As an adult, I remain very motion-sensitive. I could feel our high-rise sway when the wind kicked up in Seattle. Of course, since it’s an earthquake zone it was designed to do that, but still, when I think of “the earth moving,” that’s not what I really want to happen.

So when my daughter (pictured above) wanted to go whale watching for her birthday, I took a long gulp. Hurricane Igor may be hundreds of miles off the New England coast, but he’s churning up the water and leaving us with riptides and much larger than normal swells. But, our daughter wanted to see some whales, so I armed myself with Dramamine and a rice cake, and off we went.

The tour operator took us 26 miles out to a spot where the ocean floor rushes up to create an underwater plateau a mere 100 feet deep. It’s a spot rich in food sources for humpbacks, right whales and a couple smaller species. Unfortunately, getting there was like having a rodeo with the ocean. The hull bucked and slapped against the increasing strong seas. We pitched, yawed and rolled. The on-board naturalist turned a very unnatural shade of green.

And once we got there, there were no whales to be seen. They were obviously affected by the water conditions as well and had looked for calmer waters as Igor approached.

And no, there are no refunds on these tours. Just a voucher to try again on a later date.

It turned out, as all adventures do, diffferently that we’d hoped. But for what it was worth, we had a family outing on the very high seas. Dramamine and rice cakes worked for me and yes, I will give a try on another much calmer day.

I suspect I’ll fulfill #8 more than once between now and Touch of a Thief’s release day next spring. I think it’s still a good goal to look for opportunities to move out of my comfort zone and try new things.

So I’m Xing out another item on the bucket list. I know it seems silly, but I feel a glow of accomplishment when I check one off.

How about you? Have you ever had an adventure that turned out differently than you expected?

6 thoughts on “Saying Yes

  1. Nynke says:

    Wow, Saranna, that sounds great! Yay!

  2. Saranna DeWylde says:

    That is so cool! I’m proud of you for working through your bucket list. You are made of win.

    I’m actually on an adventure right now. I’m on a writing retreat on Sanibel Island with a great group I met through the textnovel contest. It’s been better than I could have imagined.

    We walk on the beach together and shell in the morning, sometimes we chat and sometimes we’re silent, each lost in our own thoughts and inspiration. We’ve shared ideas and good conversation over great food and wine, the atmosphere is so relaxed, everyone respects everyone else’s personal and creative space…it’s paradise. They’ve been so encouraging and… yeah.

    I spoke to a friend of mine overseas today and I haven’t talked to her in a couple of weeks and she thought I was giving her the fake out because I sounded so happy and relaxed.

    I honestly haven’t gotten much writing done yet, but it’s only been a couple days. I took that time to decompress and find the joy. I wasn’t making progress on any of projects, but now I have a game plan and I feel the best I have in a long time. I’m hoping to continue this trend when I get home. But for now, I’m still feeling the bliss.

  3. Marcy W says:

    Doesn’t this count for #6 too? Or doesn’t that qualify as someplace? And, is it cheating if one event counts for two list items?! Oh, the ethical questions that arise at odd times . . . :-)

  4. Penelope says:

    I wonder if the whales have rice cakes and dramamine, too!

  5. Nynke says:

    Wow, 9 ft waves! Scary! I usually only get motion sickness when in cars or on buses, but this would’ve done it for me, too. Yay for dramamine! And what a shame about the whales. It actually makes a lot of sense that they weren’t there, if you think about it… Still, an accomplishment is an accomplishemnt :).

    As for adventures turning out differently than you’d expected, I guess it’s not really an adventure if nothing unexpected happens. Not knowing what will happen or dealing with exciting/dangerous things as they happen is what makes an adventure for me. Prime examples for me include going on a hitch-hiking contest to reach Switzerland, 560 miles away; hiking across a glacier in Austria and then nearly falling into a crevasse (yay for being secured by rope to 15 other people!); and falling in love with my boyfriend, who I’d never expected I would be able to maintain a healthy relationship with!

  6. Erin says:

    Sounds like fun, if you take out the swells. Good grief! I don’t get motion sickness usually, but I think even I would have turned green.

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