Originally, I had this vast, rediculous mexiphobia. To me Mexico was:
- Like a speedy gonzalez cartoon
- the food and water was toxic
- stepping over the border I'd be immediately rendered unconcious
- upon awaking I'd be either in Jail or home with my new wife consuela
- her name would be tattooed on my arm
- She would be 6 months pregnant with my child
- my wallet would have been lost at the bullfights, I didn't even attend.
About a year and a half ago, I ventured into Tijuana when schnookiemuffin came to visit me. While, TJ is not necessarily representative of all of Mexico. It can be considered one of the more capitallistically pushy areas. We didn't stay very long, but it did allay my overly irrational fears and viciously foolish stereotyping. this is what being brought up in the NorthEast US does to you.
Hmmmn, I wonder what San Diegans think of Canada.
So, I'm excited to go. the trip was mildly spontaneous. But, put two Sun-Saturn conjunct Aries together and anything can happen.
shaska has gone snorkelling (what appears to me) several times. She also has some really nice equipment. (To sk4p, lrstrobel, and the rest of the gutter minded back in the 'burgh...No, no...No, no no no. that's not what I meant) She let me use her mask, snorkel, and fins. I'm a fairly mediocre swimmer on my own, but for some reason, put a mask over my eyes and nose, and I become a fish. While I'm still getting used to the snorkel part, I enjoy going under for extended periods of time.
As for the fins... It looks so easy until you try it. The pool at the apartment was a perfect place to start this process. Using fins is like regressing to some long-forgotten animal instinct. Unfortunately, all the while, your brain is analyzing the process and trying to help you evolve out of this desire to move like a fish and use your legs and knees.
The energy I expended in the first 15 minutes trying to walk underwater in fins almost killed me. My knees (problematic for about 6 years now) hurt on every kick. Granted, guru shaska pointed out that I shouldn't need to use my knees and all motion should come from a locked knee effort of riding the motion in my hips. To abuse Shakespeare, "Oh, that I were a woman"
This was further complicated by the buoyancy of the fins trying to drag my feet to the surface leaving me head under with my feet kicking purposelessly on the surface. this complicated the whole snorkel bit. I found myself continually aiming for the wall.
Note: When snorkeling for real...there are no walls or floor of the water container to stand on.
After about an hour I began to be able to feel the idea of how it was supposed to work and could slightly propel myself. The direction i was able to start to get a grip on was 'up' as by that time i was exhausted and hanging onto the metal stair handle in the fingerquotes"deep" part of our 6' pool.
I have about 2 weeks to try to get more proficient with fins.
More on this as it develops