It's like landing on another planet -
Suspended in crystal fluid, enchanted.
Magic wands wave in a watery breeze,
Currents tugging in a gentle tease.
A fantastic shape glides regally by,
Green-tinted light, easy to see by.
In latest fashion has nature dressed her,
Her world I share,
My living ancestor.
Lynn stared at her image in the mirror. A frank appraisal would include the words 'slightly overweight' and 'pale'. Her job as a lawyer in a large corporation did nothing for her need for exercise and fostered an attitude that getting ahead in life equated with working straight through her vacation.
This time, she vowed to get as far from the work place as possible, both in distance and in ambiance. The vacation experience that most titillated her sense of adventure was a flight to Australia and an ocean cruise to the Barrier Reefs of New Zealland. A winter vacation was dictated by the company, but warm breezes was her kind of weather.
After depositing her pager and cell phone in the top drawer of her dresser, slamming it shut with a certain amount of satisfaction. Being an amateur photographer, Lynn looked forward to capturing exotic fish in their natural habitat and enlarging them for her wall. Too excited to sleep, she buried herself in a book on New Zealand fauna until sleep finally came.
Emerging from the busy airport in Sydney, Lynn turned her face to a warm and brilliant sun. Twenty four hours ago, cold, damp air threatened snow back in the wintry United States and she relished the contrast. The tour bus barreled through the city streets, using its bulk to bully the smaller cars. She planned on showering and looked forward to an interesting meal at the hotel before spending her first night in Australia. Tomorrow, a fast tour of the city would set the stage for her two week cruise up the coast. The highlight of the cruise would be her first glimpse of New Zealand and shallow diving in the reef waters.
The next day, dawn crept over the Pacific as Lynn gazed toward the cloud topped lava cliffs, home to thousands of sea birds. The surrounding countryside was the antithesis of the land where Lynn grew up. Hints of steamy jungle lie behind secret coves of white beaches. Lynn prepared for the imminent sojourn into the depths of a reef. What fantastic shapes would she see? Her books told of fairy