I suspect like many other people of my generation, i.e. those who remember seeing that fin and hearing that music at such a young and impressionable age, I have an incredible fear of the sea. Absolutely nothing would ever compel me to go much beyond the shore breakers, be it to swim in it, snorkel over it or god forbid, scuba dive to the dark depths. Actually to be honest this fear pretty much covers deep water in general, including, embarrassingly enough, large public swimming pools.
Of course I do know that this fear is completely unfounded and exists only in my overactive imagination. I have never come face to face or been even remotely nibbled by a shark. I have of course read all the statistics, the tiny percent of deaths every year, and that yes, you are more likely to be killed by a falling vending machine than become lunch. Strangely though this particular statistic does nothing to banish my fear, possibly because I don’t think I have ever panicked and run at the sight of a vending machine.
So with this paranoid state of mind it does of course make perfect sense why I would leave the safety of landlocked Cheltenham in the UK and move to Perth, Western Australia, a place famous for it’s great whites and several ‘incidents’ that have involved large hungry fish and human sushi.
Now that I am here I am relieved to say that for the most part, I barely give a second thought to certain inhabitants of the sea. That is unless of course Jaws were to strike again – and last Saturday he was most defiantly alive and thrashing off the coast of Albany, a mere 416 kms south of Perth.
A man was bitten by a 4 metre white pointer which then dragged him about 1.5m underwater, only letting him go when he poked it in the eye. Now you would probably think that this sort of experience would render a person into a near catatonic state. But no, this is simply not the Australian way. In his TV interview he laid on his hospital bed with his mauled leg to the camera, acting as if it was nothing at all, just one of those unfortunate incidents.
Being run down by a renegade shopping trolley, or even being hit by a falling vending machine could be seen as an unfortunate incident. Having something try to eat you, is, in my opinion, NOT. That said, thumbs up to the guy for getting free. Personally I don’t think if my legs were being used as toothpicks I would have my wits about me enough to even remember to go for the eye.
So then just to top it all off, as I am reading about this attack, I was emailed the following story. I don’t know whether it’s true or if the picture is just a rather good Photoshop job. Either way, it’s enough of a validation for me why I believe that pools are by far the safer option and why the ocean is defiantly meant for those that were born with gills!
READ THE TEXT BELOW BEFORE OPENING THE PICTURE…
Family on holiday in Australia for a week and a half when husband, wife and their 15 year old son decided to go scuba diving. The husband is in the navy and has had some scuba experience.
His son wanted a pic of his mum and dad in all their gear so got the underwater camera on the go. When it came to taking the pic the dad realized that the son looked like he was panicking as he took it and gave the “OK” hand sign to see if he was alright.
The son took the pic and swam to the surface and back to the boat as quick as he could so the mum and dad followed to see if he was OK.
When they got back to him he was scrambling onto the boat and absolutely shitting himself.
When the parents asked why he said “there was a shark behind you” and the dad thought he was joking but the skipper of the boat said it was true and that they wouldn’t believe him if he told them what it was.
As soon as they got back to the hotel they put the pic onto the laptop and this is what they saw.
Try and tell me you wouldn’t have emptied your entire digestive system right at the point you saw it and would you have stayed to take this PICTURE ??