Sunday, November 25, 2012

2 dozen + 1

I have now been on this earth for a quarter of a century.  When the heck did I grow up?

It has been my goal the past couple of years to come up with birthday plans that are out of the ordinary and adventurous.  Last year I gathered a group of friends and we all returned to our teenie-bopper days and went roller skating!  This year I decided to take advantage of living somewhere warm and on the sea, and we all went crab hunting! 

Yes.  I said crab hunting!  We were picked up at our apartment at 4 p.m.  We then drove roughly an hour and a half to Umm Al Quwain where we were served sandwiches and pop.  After everyone who was going arrived, we were given life jackets and skater boy shoes to wear.  We boarded the boat and headed out to sea.  It was dark out by this time and we had no light aside from the moon and a flashlight the guy driving the boat was using to look into the water.  That seems safe.

I luh my life vest!

The water wasn't very deep from what I could tell and after about a 5-10 minute boat ride our skipper just jumped out of the boat.... We were all at a loss for what we were supposed to do, so some Russian guy just decided to jump into the water too.  Then we all did.  The water came up to about my hips and was semi-cold.  We grabbed spears off of the boat and they pulled out about 5 large flashlight things so we could look into the water.  The water was clear so you could see down to the bottom.  It was really interesting! There were sea cucumbers that would pee (or just deflate...) when you took them out of the water, star fish, I saw a sea horse, Ben saw a bottom feeder shark thing, and much more. 

Tom Hanks would be proud.
I ended up spearing 4 crabs! The trick was to hold your spear straight up and down to stab it - not at an angle.  I couldn't help but think of Castaway throughout the experience.  Ben caught one crab, but it got away.  Those suckers moved fast once they were spooked and then they spooked us humans.  What was WORSE than the creepy, crawly crabs were the fish that would jump across the water and smack into you.  Not. Kidding.  I was able to dodge them at the beginning of our hunt, but towards the end I went over to help Ben with one of the lights and got smacked twice.  The first time It hit me in the life vest and, being the girl that I am, I screamed and jumped around in the water because it scared me.  The second one hit me right below my chin.  I lost my cool even more....  Ben, of course, found this all very amusing and couldn't stop laughing.  Meanwhile I was almost crying and freaking out.  Traumatizing.  Although I'd definitely be laughing if the roles were reversed.  We later learned the fish were actually barracudas.  Awesome.

Say hello to my little friend.

It seemed not long after we started our hunt that it was over.  We made our way back to shore where we showered and got ready for supper.  They had a buffet waiting for us and took our crab away to cook so we could feast on it as well.  The food was lack luster, but the crab was pretty tasty.  We enjoyed wine and beers from the bar at the hotel.  We had to fight off stray cats, which was a bit annoying, but all-in-all we enjoyed the night.

This was an experience that I wouldn't mind having again.  It was fun to do something out of the ordinary and unique!  How many opportunities are you going to get to crab hunt?!

Ines, Rachael, me & David