24 Years Old and Boat Day on the North Shore
Last week was something else… Friday was especially dreamy.
Just for starters, my hunk of a boyfriend made me a yummy breakfast, I packed my adventure bag, and on our way to town, I saw a pod of dolphins!
This felt like déjà vu because exactly 1 year ago on my 23rd birthday, Ian and I were house-sitting for some friends in Faganeanea. Ian made me breakfast in bed and I opened gifts on the porch, and was sipping on coffee and looking out at the ocean when I saw a pod of dolphins swimming gleefully in front of me!
How crazy is it that exactly a year later, I would witness this all too familiar sight, fins gliding in and out of the ocean’s surface, forcing me to recall a whole year’s worth of blessings I am so grateful for.
Fast forward to my 24th birthday. I took the dolphins as a sign of a good day ahead.
I had the day off from work and the awesome people at the National Parks of American Samoa invited me out for a boat ride around the island’s north shore. This is one of those perks – dating an NPS marine tech – that I never took advantage of until now! I almost cannot believe that this is their everyday job, diving in pristine waters and maybe tanning on the bow in between. It’s something of a dream. I jumped off the boat and snorkeled for an hour while the dive team worked, and got to use my birthday present (all green DaFiN kick fins) that Ian surprised me with that morning!
My only qualm that day was my motion sickness. Yup, I puked a couple of times, and it wasn’t pretty.
But nothing could detract from how amazing I felt my day was going otherwise. The dive team came back up and picked me and Brenda up from the bay we were snorkeling in. We took a photograph-worthy tour of the north shore and went around the eastern most tip of the island, in between Tutuila and Aunu’u. When we got to the Pago Harbor, I asked to drive the boat and they let me! It was in the no-wake zone so we were going 10mph tops, but I was still ecstatic. And then the NPS team brought out brownies and ice cream in a Hydro Flask and started singing happy birthday to me!
The rest of the day went by just as amazing – my best friend and boyfriend threw me a surprise party and there was painting involved and lots and lots of friends and pizza. What more could a girl ask for?!