We've been laying low in South Carolina since early January, not doing much of anything because we didn't realize that Myrtle Beach pretty much shuts completely down December thru February. But we've been enjoying the Grand Opening special at the North Myrtle Beach RV Resort and Drydock Marina. When we first got here, we were the only RVers in the entire place. I surely do love that.


Now we have about six others, but it was fun there for a while. And of course we brought the weather woes that we always seem to have a knack for...they experienced some of their coldest temps ever this January. Yee haw.

But we've taken some walks on the beach, and today we cashed in Phil's dad's Christmas present to us, which was a "dive with sharks" experience at Ripley's Believe It Or Not Aquarium. It was SOOOOOOOOO fun. We watched a YouTube video beforehand so we thought we knew what we were getting into. You basically go in the tank and sink down into a shark cage and that's that for 30 minutes. But that's not what they did with us. There was no cage. It was us, some random other tourist dude, and two employees keeping the most curious of the toothy bastards at bay with some PVC pipes. It was so freaking awesome, I can't even put it into words. And the highlight was this huge sea turtle named Gabby who I was going nutso over before I even got in the water with her, and I was gushing over her and saying that I hope she comes up and says hi, and the employees were trying to calm me down and saying that she could, but don't bank on it and no guarantees and whatnot. But wouldn't you know that lovely critter was enamored of us (ok, me...probably because of my half-assed pouffy hair ball pony tail I put on the top of my head) and she headbutted me three times. Twice I saw her coming and could sort of get out of her way (but not totally because I had a wall at my back and she was HUGE...so one time I got a flipper all the way from my side of my face to my shoulder) but one time she came from behind me and I didn't know she was there until I had turtle belly on my face. When we got out, the employees told us how lucky we were because usually she'll only come by once and then stay away, but they said she really liked our group.


And, of course, there were sharks. In fact, we couldn't go out when they first wanted to because they all seemed to be congregating where we were supposed to come out, so I actually had to go back to the staging area until they were under control. But they had us move around about three times so we could get a good view of everything. I was okay when they let me have my back to a nice, safe wall, but the third time they moved us, we were just all out in it. The sharks were no great whites or anything, but they still were sharks and they had teeth, and it was fantastic. The only disturbing moment was when one shark got passed the employees and swam right behind mine and Phil's backs. There was a torrent of exhaled bubbles with that one, let me tell ya.

So, that picture of Gabby is not one of ours...it's courtesy of the aquarium's website, as is the thumbnail for this entry, but the dude with whom we dove today took some video that he said he would share with us, so if it's worthwhile, I'll post that when we get it.

Next stop...Williamsburg, VA.

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