I bodyboard some really fun waves here at Pohoiki Bay almost every day. One great difference between here and San Francisco, where I also surf almost every day I'm there, is that my partner Heidi can swim and snorkel while I'm riding waves. That's not going to happen in frigid NorCal waters. So it has enhanced our togetherness.
Yesterday when I was paddling out, I was startled by a 6" gray fin cutting the water about 10 feet from me. Instinctively turning for shore, I soon realized it was a large manta ray, which I have seen out there before. It followed me all the way out to the lineup. Pretty soon I heard yelling and saw some people along the rocky shoreline with their arms raised in triangles, shouting "SHARK! SHARK!" Oh well. They were just calling it as they saw it- it did look just like a shark fin. Nobody paid them much attention, and the manta stayed around the whole time, along with some sea turtles.
P.S. By Heidi
Often as couples we see things entirely different. One of the vital skills to a loving relationship is to not make each other wrong. We often say, "look, your wrong it's not a shark, it's a manta ray." Naturally we would want to correct there terror by showing the the "truth." Well intimacy happens when we allow for someones current reality to be met, heard and validated. So more like this, " OMG, that must be terrifying for you to see me in the water with a shark! I am happy to let you know it was a manta ray. Acknowledgment goes along way.