While in Bora Bora, I was talking to a hotel concierge about snorkeling and diving trips. I had been planning on trying to do a shark adventure and so half joking I said I wanted to pet a shark. To my surprise she didn’t hesitate but pointed to the brochure I was holding and said “This one monsieur Samson”. A day later I was swimming with a dozen sharks and some sting rays. No tank, no cage. Just swimming in open waters.
Here is some video I took of my trip:
The 6 other people on the trip with me were a little stand-off’ish so I took the plunge into the water first. After a minute or so, the whole boat load of people were in the water with me and we were having an amazing adventure.
The guide chummed the water to get the sharks to come close to us. This made me a little nervous but I didn’t want him to stop since it brought them right up to us. I was able to touch one of them but the black tip reef sharks were very shy even though they are known to attack people.
As much fun as this was, I probably won’t go out of my way to swim with sharks again unless it involves great whites or whale sharks. If you have an interest, I can say I enjoyed this and am glad I did it. I just have other things I want to focus on now.
I struggle with a natural desire to be my childrens friend. I inherently know I must be much more than a friend. I must be a father and that requires being a disciplinarian.
My goal is not to be my childrens conscience. As a great father, I must help them learn self-discipline, how to control impulses and avoid acting out of frustration.
As a disciplinarian, I am first a role model. I teach my children right from wrong, respect for others and acceptable behaviors through my own words and actions. That was an important statement and I don’t want anyone to miss it so I will say it twice. I teach them through my words and actions.
To teach discipline, I base my words and actions on a few key ideas:
- Explicit limits and boundaries. No surprises. We talk about and acknowledge good and bad, right and wrong, acceptable and not, rewards and consequences.
- Consequences and rewards. Everything has them. Make good choices. Again, be as explicit as possible and balance praise and criticism, rewards and punishment.
- Consistency. This is one of the most important actions. Don’t back down. If you say your going to turn the car around if they don’t improve their attitude, do it. If you promise ice cream after a success, do it.
- Entitlement. Avoid it, period.
- Temperments. Adjust to them. Every child is different and it will take some time to learn them.
- Physical punishment. Avoid it. Stop guessing and going by feeling or how your parents did it. Modern data in the last 50 years supports this conclusion. Read Punished by Rewards: http://bit.ly/cQUuLz
I love the San Juans but you can kayak with whales all over the world from what I have seen. For the San Juans, all you need to do is check whale sightings:http://www.whalemuseum.org/hotlinefolder/update.html from the local whale museum. Then pick one of the local outfitters to take you there. I’ve been with http://www.outdoorodysseys.com and http://www.sea-quest-kayak.com but there are probably other places too (http://www.discoveryseakayak.com). If your tight on money, have your own kayak and are experienced in Ocean navigation, you can always take your own group and not pay for the guide and equipment.