Tahiti Experience and Observations

 

I must have watched the movie Mutiny on the Bounty too many times over the years which is why I wanted to travel to Tahiti.

 

Scuba Diving Transition Experience

At Bora Bora, I checked going scuba diving off my “bucket list.”  In order to go scuba diving, most people become certified by going through weeks of instruction, or at hotel resorts, go into a pool and become trained in how to use the equipment.  My instruction lasted about five minutes on the boat as we were heading out to the dive spot.

After having an oxygen tank strapped on my back, I was surprised how heavy it was and how much diving “stuff” I was wearing. I was told to sit on the side of the boat with my back to the water, and fall backwards into the ocean. I really didn’t think that was a great idea. I asked myself what the heck am I doing this for? I so wanted to stand up and say take this tank off, I no longer want to dive.  After sitting there for what seemed  an eternity, I transcended my anxiety and fear, held my mask and fell backwards, and entered into a whole new world. Experiencing the freedom of movement and seeing the beauty of the underwater world made the transition of leaving the air world worthwhile. A person on the diving boat came in the water with me and we went down to around a depth of 25feet. I knelt on the ocean floor and stayed underwater for around 20 minutes.

My experience later reminded me of people who want to make a major life transformation. They are still in the same boat that they have been in over the years. They are at the transition point of staying in the known or falling into a new unknown world.  When I was underwater, the oxygen tank on my back was no longer heavy which is very much what happens when we let go of the weight of years of negativity. Courage is deeply satisfying and empowering.

 

Tahiti Observations

 

Ocean Rising

I became aware that almost all of the businesses and stores, as well as ninety-five percent of the houses on the six islands I visited were located on roads that run along the coastline. This is because the volcanic mountains in the interior are far too steep to build anything on them which makes the islands vulnerable to rising oceans due to climate change.

Three nights while sailing in open waters, the waves became nine foot seas.  As we entered into harbors, I realized that the coral reefs that surrounded the islands were barriers that prevented waves from crashing onto the shore and eroding the land. Because of the death of coral, due to climate change, this protective wall will not exist in a few years for many island nations.

 

Happy People

I found the Polynesian people to be happy which should not be a great surprise since they live in one of the most beautiful parts of the world. Historically, the native population’s navigational skills, based on their knowledge of the stars, allowed them to discover islands throughout the South Pacific Ocean.

 

People Living in Harmony

While waiting for a flight at the San Francisco airport, I got into conversation with a man who moved from France to Tahiti 25 years ago. He told me that the native Polynesian people and the French have lived in racial harmony for the past two hundred years.  I saw this racial harmony numerous times during my visit.  People treated each other with mutual respect which will be the theme of the next blog series and program: Creating National Unity Through Mutual Respect.

 

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