What do kids want for their sixteenth birthday nowadays?
Probably very different things that what my generation wanted when we got to that age; the age when you think that you are already an adult… but, well… Some items are probably still the same: motorbike, car,… the tools that should give you freedom. And there are other items that are probably still not really loved, like boring socks or classy pyjamas. LPs and cassettes? Probably not any more.
But apart from all the general materialistic presents that so many kids want, there are other presents and other ways to celebrate that special day. Like Scott, spending his sixteenth birthday in our boat, with his parents and sisters. Waking up while the sun rises next to Tachai Island, and getting the “happy birthday!!” from the family minutes before jumping to dive the amazing Tachai Pinnacle. Is this present enough? For sure, but the big present still have to come. The big surprise, for him and for everybody. In the second and third dives on his birthday, Scott is able to dive with a 6 metre curious and gentle whaleshark; and is able to see it from the top, from the bottom, from the left side, the right side, a couple of times even have to swim quickly to get out of the whalesharks way, and he can shoot all that in his new GoPro!!
Its special for Scott, but also for absolutely everybody else. Like Kitty, the dutch woman that have been chasing the whalesharks for a very long time but had never been in the right place at the right time. The previous night she was telling us, out of frustration, that at the end, when retires, she would go to Donsol or Oslob, in Philippines, places where she didn’t really want to go for the fact that there they feed the whalesharks for the tourists to see them and swim with them and whatever other things that the tourists do with them. Is completely un-ethical for her, but would be the way to see some of the biggest fishes on the sea. But after the 2 dives in Richelieu, she doesn’t need to do it anymore. Like Elisabeth, her friend, that last night shared her frustration, and now shares her emotion and happiness.
And what about Frederick, sharing the moment with her mum, as Franco shares the moment with her daughter. Yes, kinda family trip; and I can imagine that sharing those moments with your parents or siblings has to be still more special that it would be otherwise. Well, and obviously living it with your husband/wife, like Kirk and Danielle, that are in the frontline the whole time, taking pictures of the massive animal and enjoying the magic of the moment. Or enjoying it with friends, like the chinese team, a bunch of friends that have travelled together from China to see big stuff. Big stuff you say? Here you go….
What a birthday party for everybody.
Please leave us a comment if you were on the trip with us. And check out the Image Gallery to see all the other cool stuff we saw