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Save a Small Business, Don't Pet The Sharks in Oahu

Author: Stacey Levinson
Date of Trip: January 2012

My brother joined me for most of the time, my parents bailing early on because the water made them cold - a common sensation that I don't usually experience. My brother was happy to be in there too, so we stayed in the water, watched, pointed out the bigger ones, and posed for a bunch of crazy pictures.

In addition to the board shorts, I also REALLY REALLY wished I'd gotten a pedicure for the awesome photo with my flipperless foot on the cage floor with a big shark just below. We couldn't tell what we'd gotten with the cameras because they weren't digital and the water prevented us from staying still. But it was fun to try for a good shot.

Time was up too soon and I lingered in the water until the crew got cranky. I finally climbed out, they collapsed the cage, pulled the ladder and off we raced to shore. The ride back was a nice one, fast and sort of bumpy, and I sat under the hull with my family to stay dry and warm. Tankini was still propped on the edge of the back of the boat. Images of Goldie Hawn reaching for her ring in 'Overboard' came to mind, but by some miracle (and, yes, weight) she stayed on. No one fell overboard that day, and only half decided to go in the water. But everyone had fun with a little mix of fear, which made them happy. And then they all bought sweatshirts, which made the crew happy.

The tours are still running. Admittedly, I'd do it again in a heartbeat. And I'd pay for it.

*Buffalo Girl Travel tip - Take a digital camera if you're shooting underwater. Make sure you have a dry, shady and stable place to see what you've taken. Be sure to wipe down the lens (spit helps defog a camera lens, in addition to defogging your goggles - spit or fuzzy photos, you choose). Just don't give up too much time taking underwater photos because good ones are near impossible without great (*read, 'insanely expensive') underwater gear. The best bet is to take a million up front and then put the camera away. Or, just take the experience and have someone else be the photographer.

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