Friday, July 30, 2021

Day Four with Discovery Channel

Hi All, The Discovery Channel has arranged for us to get covid tests for our trip home. The testers come right to our condo. Other than feeling like I have a third nostril that was pretty sweet! I'm not feeling quite as good as the other mornings. I think the late night dialysis is taking it's toll. Perhaps a dolphin encounter will help. We get on the water a bit later due to covid test. It's a bit blustery today but still really nice. As we come out of Leeward, there are a few boats milling around. There is Bo and Scooter entertaining them. I get in and swim with them for a long, long, time. Scooter has gotten so long she's almost as big as Bo. She's frisky as ever swimming all around me. Her favorite is to let me swim by Bo then whiz up really close beside me, a sort of sneak appearence. Matt, Discovery's under water camera man is able to get in and get footage of Bo, Scooter and me. This is Bo's fourth calf that I have swum with. She's the first one that is fine with other people swimming with her. I expect JoJo wanted that to happen. In the video you can hear her whistling a lot until the music comes on.
I get back on Spy Hop tired but pumped to see my friends after over a year. Pretty soon we see that JoJo is in Sea Dancer's wake. They are heading toward Half Moon Beach where the tour boats bring passengers for lunch. It's a spectacular long beach over looking the gorgeous turquiose water. There are about 15 boats lined up with tourists piling out to walk the beach. JoJo leaves Sea Dancer and heads out toward us. I get in to swim with him. Matt gets in as well to get footage of us together. I hope for that great greeting I got the other day. I think really that was a, "I haven't seen you for a long time and I'm glad it's you"
. I did get some video this time and you can see the remorra hitching a ride back by JoJo's fluke.
By this time I am really tired and having a hard time climbing onto the boat. We leave JoJo with Matt's boat and head in. I really hate leaving him when he's in such a playful mood but I'm hoping to recharge and come out tomorrow.

Thursday, July 29, 2021

Day Three Discovery Channel

Hi All, The plan is to leave the dock at 7 AM but, it never seems to go that way. There is so much equipment to load onto both our boats and people to get organized. In the mean time, a boat captain coming into the marina for fuel calls to us that he saw JoJo. This is making me nuts to get going. We finally start our circle of Grace Bay not sure which way he was going. After going past all the resorts and turning around and returning to Leeward, we see two boats acting suspicious. There he is behind a dingy attached to a brand new sail boat from the RItz Carlton, the "Lady Grace". John skillfully manuvers us by the dingy and JoJo comes right into our wake. He is heading toward Pine Cay. He stays behind Spy Hop all the way past Pine Cay, Fort George Cay and Parrot Cay. The Discovery crew sets out a drone to catch the scene. A laughing gull is intrigued by this new sort of bird! He swoops in for some close inspection. The water gets very shallow as we travel along Parrot Cay and we decide to turn around. I was quite sure JoJo would stay with us and he did. The Discovery crew started telling us to stop and see if he'd swim with us but I didn't want to do that because I knew he wasn't ready to slow down and swim with me. They had taken the camera men off our boat for the drone shots and they stayed on Matt's boat. We kept going with JoJo and they went off toward the reef to cool off with a swim. Once we got to Leeward JoJo branched off. I knew this was my chance. I got in while John frantically tried to get the other boat to come back. I swam over to JoJo and he came right up. He swam next to me looking at me as if to say, "where have you been I've missed you". I am babbling like a nut telling him how much I love him and missed him. I'm trying not to use my flippers because we are so close I dont want to kick him. He drops back and swims right behind me. I'm in heaven. The other boat has caught up and I figure they must have gotten some great footage of my reunion with JoJo after so long. If not my camera will have it. Not to be, they wasn't there in enough time to get their fancy cameras set up and mine didn't work. Big Bummer but I am so so happy to have that swim with my friend. I didn't think about my cancer, dialysis or of what I've been going through for even a second. Perhaps we will get footage tomorrow but, I got what I really wanted which was to be with JoJo.

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Day one Discovery Channel

Hi All, After a very long time, we are finally here! I have to say getting through the airport in a wheel chair was the way to go. We went right to the front of the massive immigration line in Provo. Our great friends Abby and Robin pick us up each driving a separate cars so John could get to the Ship Yard where we keep Spy Hop and I could get to the condo to start the unpacking job. John and Robin get to the marina to find the boat filthy dirty, unfueled and with a shredded bimini. This is after many emails requesting that the boat be fueled cleaned and ready. Abby and I deal with unpacking and charging the 4 scooters. Neither of us were injured by the heaps of stuff crammed into the owners closet. Always a risk that you'll get beaned by a can of WD-40 or a flipper! We meet with the Discovery crew to go over arrangements for the next day. There are lots of them and they are all so nice. We decide on a 5:45 start to beat the tourist boats. They have hired a beautiful BIG boat owned by Matt Slattery to accomodate a huge crew of audio engineers, cameramen, director, and assitants. They have food and drinks that just couldn't fit on our boat. We'll have two camera men and one of their wives and so many camereras. There isn't an inch of room left over. We head off through Leeward Cut to start the hunt! I've been waiting for this moment for so long. It's drop dead gorgeous. How I love this island! No matter how you try to explain that finding JoJo when you come out of Leeward is a bit daunting, it doesnt become clear until they see the great expanse of water to the left and right. We do our dolphin circle past the resorts but neither boat sees anyone. We decide to split up. I think the Discovery people were starting to think we'd never find him. We are up at Pine Cay when Matt's crew finds him back at Leeward. We fly back with me trying to get flippers on without stepping on any of their massive cameras. Once we get there both boats stop and I get in. JoJo was clearly on a mission and not giving the reunion we were all hoping for. I swim with him long enough to see he has another damn remorra attached by his fluke. This never makes him happy. He does eventually get behind our boat and wants a ride to the far end of the island. I thought I'd get a swim once he wants to turn around but he just wants a ride back. I did get some footage of our first swim but unfortunatly the card broke as John took it out of the camera. Hopefully I'll get some tomorrow and hopefully he'll be in a more social mood! Discovery however got lots of footage of him in the wake and the beautiful flat tourquiose water. Until tomorrow. Jay

Saturday, July 24, 2021

Trip to Turks

Hi All, John and I are heading to Provo to meet the crew from Discovery Channel. We are hoping to see JoJo. It's been a long time and I hope we find him. I am eager to see who else is around. I hope there are new calves. I'm nervous my cancer will make me so weak I can't swim with them for long but I'm going to give it my best shot! Stay tuned I hope there's lots to report! Jay