Angle to Key West: Torpedoed (4/6)

Fernandina, FL – April 6, 2013

The water exploded with grey skin and foam. A monstrous leather tail appeared out of nothing, thrashed, then shot towards me, waves rippling off it like a torpedo racing through the water.

I slammed my paddle down and pushed back, trying to get out of the way, but the manatee covered the twenty feet between us in a few powerful strokes and exploded into the port bow before I even put the other blade into the water.

The bow dipped and popped into the air, water shot skyward and a wave crashed onto the deck. The boat tilted sideways, righted itself, then sat still. Everything went calm.

I didn’t move for a moment. I just looked at my soaked clothes, stared at the water, and let my mind catch up. Then I laughed because what else is there to do when you’ve just been torpedoed by a manatee.

3 thoughts on “Angle to Key West: Torpedoed (4/6)

  1. Hello Daniel, I’m laughing too as the same thing happened to my daughter and me while we were kayaking Ft. DeSoto.  Paddling side by side she was sent skyward first, as a rather large one decided to come up for air perfectly beneath her kayak. Plopping down and totally drenched, we laughed for seconds until it was my turn and he/she thrust my boat into the air. Afterwards I was quite sure that it was meant to be a playful experience for a lonely manatee. I met you during your talk at the Gulfport library and have been following your lost adventures everyday.

    Happy Sails to you, Mary Meyers

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