Friday, November 03, 2006

It must be Halloween...

Well last night the goblins and ghouls; like can only be seen on south beach patrolled Ocean Drive till the wee hours. The costumes are tending more towards maximum female exposure, so what's not to like.

Any ways, I was getting ready see the Halloween sights when I noticed nearby, a bit of a commotion on the waters surface. I was curious enough to jump in the dink. I see many things which are usually just the nature and manner of fish; no need to investigate. This was different and I wanted to explore.

I approached with care less I frighten it away or hurt whatever it was; to my surprise I saw the mouth and eyes of an inverted adolescent ray. Ok they are never on their backs. We all heard about the adventurer who was killed by the barb of a ray a few weeks ago. You may also have heard of the 82 year old Floridian who was in a boat last week and was struck near the heart by a ray, of all things it leapt into the boat.

Those things were on my mind but I know from first hand experience that these are gentle beings, I have touched them and they press back as if to say, "More I like it".

It was a Florida spotted ray that somehow had managed to get itself on its back and try as it did it could not get right side up.

Touching the Ray in its survival mode wouldn't be wise so I decided to put the boat on a plane and turn abruptly close by him to cause a big wake that he might use to flip over. Nice plan but it didn't work.

I was beginning to worry that the Ray might become exhausted, suffocate or maybe a shark might happen along. I put the boat back up on a plane and sped to Stray Cat and got a long handled deck brush than went back to the Ray. He was still struggling but not as vigorously. I tried gently to flip him but gentle was not the answer; I was also concerned about his tail and barb since I was so close. The next try would have to be with plenty of power.

I put the brush under him, actually his top side which would be the side we usually see as they are swimming, the side that is black with almost iridescent small white dots from which it gets its name. I pulled up as hard as I could but it did not lift him very much. I was about to give up and rethink this whole approach when he managed a wiggle, just right to catch some water and flip.

I stood there in the boat looking down at him for what seemed a long time; it was not moving, happily it got itself together and swam off.

My adrenalin was flowing but I felt good.