Tuesday, February 18, 2014

The Great Christmas Surprise, part 6– the Dolphins

 

Because I cannot help myself, I end up ruining most vacations and finding some educational component in our adventures and relaxation.  Not wanting to disappoint my family (haha!), we booked a Dolphin Encounter at Blue Lagoon Island on our port day in Nassau, Bahamas.

Nassau, Bahamas day

For the record, this was Luke and Levi’s first time out of the country (the Bahamas are a British Crown colony) and Ben’s second foreign travel – he was able to go to Canada before all the rules changed about passports and such.

After debarking from our beautiful ship, we took a 45 minute boat ride to Blue Lagoon Island.  Wow, are the Bahamian seas BLUE!

Nassau, Bahamas Day - Dolphin Encounter

I was a little concerned that our encounter might not be worth the money.  It seemed like a lot of money for what was advertised:

“Then, accompanied by your trainer, immerse yourself in a specially designed platform, placed waist deep (approximately 3 feet) in an all-natural ocean pool, where you will have 30 minutes to interact with your dolphins.”

After a 10-15 minute introduction to the dolphins with about 40-50 other guests, we were divided into groups of about 15 or so.  We were escorted to floating docks where we waiting for our ‘show’ to start.

Then, we were escorted into the brisk water, were introduced to our dolphin, Shawn, and had our picture taken with the dolphin.  Levi was the willing and brave receiver of a kiss:

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We went back to sitting on the dock while everyone else had their kissy picture with Shawn.

And really, that’s all I thought we’d get to do. But, having low expectations leads to surprises and wonder.  Even my mom and dad were happy to see all that we were able to do with Shawn.

We were led back into the water after all the group pictures were finished and spent time learning, feeding, touching and interacting with Shawn.  Here’s some pictures:

Petting Shawn’s back:

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Ben is kissing Shawn:

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Levi is hugging Shawn, who is really pretty heavy!

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Luke is dancing with Shawn:

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I am feeding Shawn (Still have all my fingers).  During another time we were touching Shawn, we actually got to touch his teeth.

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Nana and Levi are rubbing his belly.  It is much softer than I thought.

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The great thing was that we all had the opportunity to do each of these encounters with Shawn.  I was proud of my boys for being willing to try each of the encounters and having fun in the process.  Maybe next time we will try out their sea lion encounter.

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