By Richard O'Barry
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Additional resources for Behind the Dolphin Smile: One Man's Campaign to Protect the World's Dolphins
At the pen, I put on the fins and face plate, got the wire cutter, and, with a ripping belch that must have been heard in Alicetowne, I slipped over the side like a seal. In the water, I set the Danforth anchor by hand deep in the sandy bottom and away from the fence so that the Boston Whaler would look like one of the dinghies from the many boats at anchor there. I tried the new wire cutter first. It didn舗t make a dent in the chain-link fence, so I slipped it into the boat and got the bolt cutter.
What a dumb way to go, I thought. It was a sandy bottom, or it once had been. Now it was littered with beer cans and broken bottles. Barnacles, which are as sharp as razor blades on top, had attached themselves to the bottom of the fence. When I tried to twist to get away from whatever had caught me, the barnacles slashed my back, legs, and arms. I was hung up on something. I was also almost out of breath when the fence had come down on me. My head was pounding. In situations like this, I try to get a mental image of where I am.
He nodded again and turned to the next passenger. I grabbed up my stuff and took off. I had to check out a boat for the job and make sure that Charlie Brown was still being held captive; I hadn舗t been able to see him from the air. But except for that, there was nothing to do till nightfall, which comes late in the subtropics. I checked in at the Bahama Mama, a native hotel a few blocks north along Queen舗s Highway from Chalk舗s ramp. Everything is nearby in Bimini. I tossed the diving bag into the room, closed the door behind me, and looked at myself in the mirror.
Behind the Dolphin Smile: One Man's Campaign to Protect the World's Dolphins by Richard O'Barry