"Why have I been rushing about if you're taking
the time to cut your toenails?"
This remark was made as we were about to go off to the
Dolphin Research Centre at Grassy Key. With some degree
of grumbling we arrived at the dolphins at a quarter
"Excuse me, mister, do you want tickets for the
encounter with dolphins? I've made a mistake; instead
of today, I've booked for tomorrow but we have to get
off back home this evening."
I asked what was meant by an encounter with dolphins
and heard that we would be able to swim in the lagoon
with the dolphins for a whole morning.
"It costs three hundred dollars, but you can have
the tickets for two hundred dollars and you usually
have to book six weeks in advance because they only
allow six people in a group."
I looked at his two sullen daughters of fourteen and
fifteen who were not going to make their dad's life
any easier that day. I was aware that this was a stroke
of luck, so the nail cutting had proved to be of use
after all. At the cash desk I decided to pay the full
"Oh, thanks, you saved my ass."
The next morning, about twenty of us stood waiting together.
I began to have my doubts about whether we had made
such a good deal after all but at eight thirty we discovered
that only a select few were to go with us for the encounter,
The rest were to paint with dolphins, clap with dolphins
and wave with dolphins. There was a scale of charges
to cover each activity. After about forty-five minutes
of explanation when we were told that some parts of
the animals, including the private parts, were not to
be touched, we were allowed to enter the water. It was
enormous fun to swim with Flipper's daughters. The prettiest
women in the group were also allowed to take part in
the activity, kissing the dolphins.