The parasailing item. The first item on my list. The one everyone just knew I would mark off this summer. The item that I just knew I would mark off this summer. An easy one to do and one that would seem to be extremely important, since it was the first one on my list. Hmmm.
I had it planned before we left. I had even talked to Colt and Emily to make sure they wouldn't care to watch the kids while we parasailed. I wanted Brad with me because I'm terrified of heights and because I thought it would be fun for us to do together. So, it was all set that I was going to do this.
I was frustrated by it. Every time I talked to people about it, they'd tell me to do it, but that not to expect too much from it. That it wasn't that awesome. That it would be worth it to do once, but that I might not get as big of a thrill from it as I thought. And then, there were these people working at these places. They were all nice, but we'd ask about it and they'd give us a price and only promise 8 minutes of time in the air. Eight minutes for $65 for each of us? Hmmm... so I contemplated it. And, I just about threw my hands in the air and said forget it. We would just pass it up. I contemplated renting a jet ski or waverunner (it's on my list, too), but I'm terrified of seeing a shark in the ocean, so that didn't seem right either. Brad will not go deep sea fishing after a wonderful experience of being on a boat with a bunch of puking people and being sea sick himself. So, I was just going to let this one by. I wasn't about to go deep sea fishing by myself. lol. I had already marked some things off the list, it wouldn't be that big of a deal to keep this stuff on there.
Emily, my sweet, hopefully-future sister-in-law, is just like me. When she decides she wants to do something, she's going to find a way to do it. So, she knew I wanted to do the parasailing thing. She wanted to go kayaking. Neither of us seemed to be able to work it out to get what we wanted for the price we wanted or the amount of time we wanted. I gave up. She didn't. So, she called around a bunch of places on Wednesday night. She found a place that offered boat tours where they guaranteed you'd see dolphins. The boat was a small boat that would only accommodate 6 people, the number in our group. The price was only $40 for each adult and $30 for each child. That is correct - $140 for four people to go on a boat for 2 hours, where they guaranteed you'd see dolphins. Or $130 plus tax for eight minutes in the air for me and Brad. Hmmm....
So, naturally, we went on the boat ride. Yes, the "I'm on a boat" skit from SNL was referenced, several times. :)
Was I disappointed in my choice? No. Not at all. As a matter of fact, I almost want to take off parasailing and change it to dolphin watching, but I'll leave it for now. :) The boat ride was incredible. I can't even begin to tell you how fabulous it was to have dolphins swimming up so close to the boat, splashing in the water, and making my children giddy with excitement. Jake was a little concerned that they were sharks at first, but we cleared that up. lol. I can see why though... a big part of the time, we could only see the dorsal fin.
There was a baby dolphin and its mother splashing and eating near us at one point (there were like 40 dolphins that we saw). The mother and baby are called a cow and a calf, as I learned. It was incredible to hear all about how the grass that grows in the marsh plays such a pivotal role in why Hilton Head attracts so much wildlife (much like the marshes in Louisiana, I am sure). I never knew that the reason the water wasn't clear in that area was because of the minerals from the grass dissolving. It was really neat to see the sea oysters in their natural habitat, although I'd prefer they stay there. I can't see how anyone could eat something so disgusting (sorry Brad, Paul, and Rebecca). :) We also saw a sea turtle, but no photos. He was shy. Did you know that dolphins are very similar to us in that they carry their babies for about a year, the mother raises the calves for about 8 years, and the fathers have basically no responsibility for raising the children? No, that is not meant to be a slam on guys out there. lol. But, funny all the same. :)
It truly was fascinating... and tons of fun. Colt and Emily got drenched by water, we saw a shrimp boat, and saw the lighthouse from the boat. It was just beautiful. Another tidbit of info... the Hilton Head lighthouse was only created to serve as a tourist attraction. Glad that he confirmed that because I didn't want to be the idiot that asked the question... it just didn't really seem like it was a necessary place for a lighthouse, as it faced some other islands... and it wasn't really that tall. lol. Oh... and you could see the bridge in Savannah from the boat, too. Very cool.
An item doesn't get marked off my list, but it was all worth it. Parasailing will have to wait. Or maybe I will take it off of there at some point. Who knows? I was definitely reminded that the list isn't about marking things off, but about living the life I want. And that's what I chose... to do what I wanted to do instead of feeling obligated to do what's on the list. Figured you'd be proud, Bret. lol.
Oh... photos here: