Tumultuous Uproar

A cruising boat with a racing problem...

25 June 2020
21 June 2020 | Opunohu Bay, Moorea
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08 September 2019

Jump the Shark

25 June 2020
Russ Whitford
Experts say the episode that killed Happy Days was when Fonzie jumped a shark while water skiing (wearing his leather jacket of course) in Lake Michigan. “Jump the shark moment” is a pop culture term for making a very bad mistake. Well, I had my own jump the shark moment yesterday.

We were anchored in the lagoon, just outside Opunohu Bay, Moorea. As usual, we seek a shallow, sandy bottom to anchor, just deep enough for Uproar's 8 foot keel. Anchoring in shallow, crystal clear water lets us see all the sea creatures and we love the light, turquoise color. We swim every day. Jumping off the back of Uproar, I often just sink down, enjoying the bubbles and weightless feeling, then push off the bottom back up. I wrote a blog “Five second meditation” about this.

Yesterday morning, I sanded some woodworking projects, drilled a few pearls and husked three coconuts. Typical Polynesian morning. I was covered with dust and grit. Nothing could be easier or more refreshing to just jump in the water to clean off. I went right to the swim platform and jumped.

In mid-air, I saw a big blacktip shark right under me! Too late, I had already jumped. We have all seen the cartoon where the character tries to defy gravity by climbing up thin air. I'm sure that's exactly what I looked like. Instead of hitting the water, pencil straight, I hit the water flailing. I'm surprised I even got wet.

The shark was surprised too and after I clamored up the swim ladder, he was nowhere to be seen. I jumped back in and finished my morning bath.
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Vessel Name: Tumultuous Uproar
Vessel Make/Model: Beneteau 42s7
Hailing Port: Milwaukee, WI
Crew: Russ Whitford & Lisa Alberte plus Sophie our Jack Russell Terrier
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