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Thread: No, I Don't Have A Spear Gun.......... Day 1

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
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    114

    Default No, I Don't Have A Spear Gun.......... Day 1

    I knew when it happened. I knew the exact instance it occurred. Judging by Leslie’s smile and the twinkle in her eye, she also knew. We had experienced it many times.

    I looked down the aisle at the other passengers. There was excitement in the air. They knew something had changed, but, I believe, most ofthem weren’t sure exactly what it was. Some of them seemed more content; they smiled confidently and had a far off look on their faces. Like us, they had been here before, experienced this event. They realized what it meant.

    A massive hunk of metal, electronics, fuel, and passengers that Boeing calls a 737 and which Delta refers to as flight 663 had just landed at Bonaire’s Flamingo International Airport. It was parked on the tarmac, orange cones strategically placed on the pavement around the aircraft and people and vehicles tending to a plethora of seemingly random and unrelated tasks.

    Then it happened. I didn’t need to see or hear it. I felt it. Instantly.

    The flight attendants had opened the cabin door. The stale, controlled air that had accompanied us for the last three hours and thirty-fourminutes was instantly washed away with a gusher of air from the outside.

    Bonaire air.

    Paradise Air.

    As if welcoming us back after a long hiatus from home, the air seemed to say, “Breathe me in and enjoy. You have no cares or worries. Only fun and adventure awaits you. I’m glad you’re back.”
    I took in a huge lung full, as did Double L (Leslie). At thetop of the external stairs, I paused and took another deep breath. It felt good. It felt like adventure. It felt like good times waiting…..

    Unfortunately, there were two other 737’s parked on the tarmac, both with UNITED written across their fuselage. Thoughts of diving, good times, and adventure were immediately replaced with the thought of multiple loads of passengers in the luggage area. If you’ve been to Bonaire, try to picture all those passengers trying to claim their luggage at once. Yes,it was a madhouse. A hot, sweaty madhouse.

    Double L and I walked through immigration and leaned against a wall in the luggage area. We waited patiently, watching in amazement the urgency at which people were reacting. We couldn’t help but laugh. We wanted to yell, “Slow down people! You’re on vacation. You’re on Bonaire…..You’re on Paradise. What’s the rush??”

    But, alas, near pandemonium ensued. However, it seemed all bagseventually arrived for all the flights. I know ours did.

    Surprisingly, customs personnel were scanning all the bags before they would allow you out of the luggage area and into the open-airterminal. I had never experienced this on Bonaire, but Les and I got inline and patiently waited our turn, moving forward mere inches every few minutes. After about 50 people ahead of us had gone through, Double L was nextin line.

    Instead of instructing her to put her bags on the scanning machine,the customs official asked her if she was on vacation. Of course, she replied that she was. With a head nod, he said she could go on through. She scurried off, glancing back and giving me a shrug as she did so.

    I was next.

    The guy asked me if I had a spear gun. I didn’t think I had heard him correctly.

    “What?” I said.

    “Do you have a spear gun?” he repeated.

    “No,” I said.

    “Okay, you can go on through,” he said.

    I don’t know how the 200 folks behind me faired, and curse my soul, I didn’t care. I was through! I had been granted dispensation from purgatory and was strolling into Paradise.

    I zig-zaged through the corridor and immerged into the terminal, again feeling the warm Bonaire breeze brush across my body. Double L was there, smiling, feeling the same thing as I – anticipation for what lay ahead.

    And what lay ahead was the start of our 22nd trip to Bonaire.

    But, this time, without a spear gun.

    Dive on Friends,

    Dave & Leslie.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    2,174

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    Last time I took that flight I said to the captain before takeoff in Atlanta, if he does not beat that stinking Artefly plane to Bonaire he will not get a tip. Like you he did not and got no tip.

    The ocean awaits.
    And Jerry said, Keep it light, Keep it friendly. Post Like Jerry.

  3. #3
    JimMc's Avatar
    JimMc is offline Bonaire Lover SUPPORTING MEMBER - Bonaire Talker
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    As always, thanks Dave.
    Pachi Jim

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