This wonderful little island called Bunaken.
The first time I went there was shortly after our AMINEF Mid-year conference. I went snorkeling the first day and saw some of the most amazing things underwater. More Dorys, Nemos, and Marlins than I could ever handle. I’m talking Finding Nemo, not actual Dory and Marlin fish. Unforunately, I didn’t re-apply the SPF 70 after Jimmy, the divemaster, decided to take us on a second round of diving/snorkeling with the group of Romanian divers. Therefore, I discovered later that afternoon after the second trip that I had the worst sunburn of my life.
It was totally worth it, but I was in serious pain for literally two weeks.
The first time I went there, Emma and I hopped up to Manado after our mid-year conference. It was a nice escape/delay from coming back to Surabaya during final exams and the semester holidays that weren’t exactly scheduled until the very last minute. Sadly, due to the sunburn, I couldn’t dive. I couldn’t move to put on a wetsuit. It was so bad. Using the mandi was hard enough, but cold water made it a little bit better. I was exhausted and in pain and I couldn’t eat. It was weird. Emma went diving with a similar sunburn condition… I think she has a much higher tolerance for pain.
She came back raving about how cool the dive was. I wasn’t certified, but I knew I had to come back and experience life underwater, but at much greater depths.
So I did.
Just 3 weeks later, I was back at Bunaken. I wasn’t thrilled with the flight, but I got there … 17 hours on a plane for a flight that should have taken just 90 minutes. Thanks, rookie pilot!
ETAs from all over Indonesia, plus Kal’s cousin Princeton converged on MC Homestays and made it our own for the long weekend. I snorkeled, I swam, I played with BIO-LUMINESCENT PLANKTON at night underwater!!! Saw turtles, a shark, lots of cool fish, baby clownfish, all the good stuff.
Then, I went diving.
Life underwater at depths just beyond our reach is so different from that at the surface. Baby rays, nudibranchs, giant anemones, corals that you only see 100 feet underwater, and Anna with a camera and her “Flat Stanley.”
*** Please note, these underwater photos are not mine- credit goes to Julienne & Ashley! Awesome photos ladies!