Three Great Days
29 November 2012 | Grand Anse D'Arlet, Martinique
The SCUBA diving is literally and figuratively breathtaking here in Martinique. The reefs are filled with colorful corals, sponges, fish and many invertebrates. As we made our descent the sea garden spread in every direct and blossomed in every hue. There were basket sponges measured over four feet tall and small brightly colored sponges in fluorescent yellows, reds and blues. There were hard corals that and soft "Gorgonian" corals, such as sea fans and others that wave and dance with the current. There are schools of small fish and pairs and individual large ones, some that were very well camouflaged and others of stark contrast to their surroundings. We saw large black and white spotted moray eels and white and pink dotted sea snakes.
The most amazing scene for me was a beautiful coral and sponge grouping with about six Lionfish swimming through it. Lionfish have dramatic feathery and somewhat delicate looking fins, and as they swim and hover around the coral they move these fins in a way that reminds me of Metropolitan Opera players with the most intricate costumes and movements. Their coloration is equally stunning with stripes of orange, brown and white. Lionfish are native to the South Pacific and Indian Oceans and have become a more recent invasive species here in the Caribbean. They are known to have venomous spines which can deliver a very painful and serious sting that affects a human's nerves and muscles, so we were careful to watch them from a safe distance.
We have been diving, hiking and enjoying life with our good friends Michel and Danielle from Quebec and their friends, Guy (our knowledgeable dive leader), Johanne and Regil, all from Quebec. In addition to two spectacular dives we had a lovely hike from Grand Anse D'Arlet to Anse Diamont. One our return from Anse Diamont we passed a fisherman who had a couple of tunas weighing 80 to 90 pounds each. Michel and Danielle bought two kilos of fresh tuna and invited Guy, Dennis and me over for a gourmet feast. The fish, the wine, the company all made for a wonderful end to another great day.