Saturday, March 21, 2009


As a toddler, strapped into my carseat in the backseat, I evidently used to point at the windshield and yell, “shark! SHARK!” whenever it rained. It took my parents a while, but eventually they figured out I was pointing to the space on the windshield between the two blades that looked like a shark’s fin.

On our boat ride over, I saw what I thought was a shark’s fin and did the same thing. I started pointing and yelling “shark! SHARK!” Unfortunately, the boat was going to fast and we passed the shark before anyone could hear me in time to confirm. I was convinced I saw a shark. After we docked at Peleliu, I was trying to convince everyone that I, indeed, saw that shark. Dan, another member of the group who is not part of the class, walked up and asked if any of us saw the manta ray. Oh, man! It wasn’t a shark’s fin, after all. He attempted to console me by saying it was way more rare to see a manta ray than a shark, but I was still a little disappointed. I guess I shouldn’t be. I saw a manta ray swimming in the Pacific Ocean, right?

As we boated through the Rock Islands to get to Peleliu, I don’t know if any of us could fully wrap our minds around the raw beauty that surrounded us. The water sparkled unbelievable shades of blue. The islands were huge rocks that jetted out of the ocean, covered with the greenest jungle. We will all bring back photos and footage, but nothing will portray those islands with any justice.

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