My parents are ridiculously generous towards us. I tell them often, you don’t really have to be so amazing towards us, but they love to be a blessing. So, by now, after years of this spoiling, I have decided to just graciously, humbly accept their gifts.
The latest blessing was a Spring Break trip for the four of us Johnstons with the two of them, the doting grandparents. We flew down to Miami and then did a four night cruise on the Carnival Destiny. Jeff and I love cruising. LOVE IT. But we have always cruised without the kids, and so I couldn’t wait to take them on their first cruise. And I have to say, it was more amazing than I had even hoped for. Not only did we get to spend time with my parents, but the kids were extremely well-behaved, and they adored everything about the experience, especially their beds that had come down from the ceiling and the towel animals.
The cruise stopped at the port of Cozumel one of the days and we went to swim with the dolphins. This is one of those experiences that just sounds so unbelievably COOL, but yet had previously been on my “Something-I-will-only-do-if-one-of-my-children-is with-me-And-probably-only-if-someone-else-pays-the-fee” list.
(What? You don’t have one of these lists?!?!?)
It was my lucky day. I had both of my children with me and my money got to stay in my wallet, so dolphin-swimming it was.
Carter and Grandpa went first and we watched as they did all sorts of tricks with the dolphins. They even got to lay on a small boogie-board and then the dolphin pushed them back to the rest of the group. My face was in a perma-grin watching my son fist-pumping excitedly over and over.
When it was time for Mykah and I to get into the water, I was praying she would be ok. She tends to need some time to warm up to new experiences and people, so this was quite a bit out of her comfort zone. And let’s be honest, any time I have to get into a swimsuit, I am quite a bit out of my comfort zone too.
We were in a group with only one other lady and we were given a female trainer who took us to spend time with a baby dolphin, Donna-hey (okay, that’s probably not how THEY spell it, but that’s the best I can do!)
I’m thinking thoughts of “This is a once in a lifetime opportunity. Embrace every single minute of this. Share this special moment with your daughter to the fullest.”
Then a little while later as I am standing on the slimy platform in the water amidst small swimming fish, holding up Mykah because she couldn’t comfortably stand up, “Ok, this was not exactly what I was expecting.” But we shook Donna-Hey’s fins and kissed her and offered up our cheeks for her return kisses. Mykah was pretty quiet, but I could tell she was proud of herself for what she was participating in.
And then the TRUE once-in-a-lifetime-experience occurred.
Donna-Hey was upside down so we could see her underside again.
Our trainer was distracted by something momentarily and had turned away from us.
“Ummmmmmm….excuse me,.” I say while waving my free hand that was not wrapped around Mykah’s waist. “Is that what I think it is?”
Our sweet baby dolphin was POOPING.
And then the trainer just smiled apologetically while swishing and swirling “it” around in the water, not 12 inches in front of us.
Now, I ask you…How many people do you know that can say they paid to watch a dolphin poop?
You now know one.