You may recently have read a very nice little trip report by Nat about a cave some of us explored whilst yachting around Mallorca. If you haven’t you can find it here, it’s well worth a read in its own right and this report acts as a brief addendum.
I can’t really match Nat blow for blow in terms of enthusiasm, but in her excitement, I fear a few key elements of the trip may have fallen by the wayside. Plus I’ve a little sark to sprinkle over proceedings.
The whole thing was panning out to be a sham even before we’d left as half of our kit was cobbled together from the possessions of the people on the previous trip; lights, wet suits, helmets. You name it, someone had forgotten it.
Once we’d parked the boat and started travelling around the headland to the entrance my status as the weakest swimmer on the holiday became abundantly clear as I fell behind my fellows somewhat. It’s not like this hadn’t happened before, we’d been out there for the better part of a week and done a lot of swimming. What changed today was that Jack had borrowed my mask, so I in turn had nabbed someone else’s for the duration. This temporary addition to my kit didn’t really fit all that well and I discovered about a quarter of the way around that it was somehow managing to steam up loads and leak seawater into my eyes, which was rather impressive in a manner of speaking. This coupled with what might be described as a near miss with a passenger catamaran not twenty minutes earlier meant that I was pretty well below my already limited best.
I was probably about two-thirds of the way around when I realised that I really could not see anything at all. I either had a face full of condensation or already broken eyes full of seawater. As I was not able to see my destination or my friends I was rather caught between a rock and a hard place. Additionally, the rocky cliff faces being what they were I couldn’t even swim to shore for fear of being caught between a rock and several other big, sharp, pointy rocks.
I decided then to sit back and take stock of the situation. It wasn’t worth panicking yet, so I thought I’d let my friends know that I hadn’t the slightest clue where they’d bloody gone by loudly yelling “HELP! I CAN’T SEE!” and seeing what happened. If after a few minutes nothing had happened, then I could think about panicking. As it panned out of course shouting “HELP!”, even in a fairly reserved fashion, tends to give the impression that you’re panicking anyway. Consequently, I was, in fairly short order, joined by Helen and Nat with (what I imagine were, given that I couldn’t see anything) rather concerned expressions. They gave me a decent bearing and I made it the rest of the way without further incident for a nice sit down at the entrance to clean my damn goggles. I managed to keep my little escort on the way back out too as a sudden fear that I was a liability had developed, it was nonetheless appreciated I suppose.
As regards the trip itself, the previous report did rather gloss over the plunge pool. That thing was magnificent. A several metre drop into freezing water with an easy ascent back to the top straight out of the water and a ridge at the top that you could either precariously balance atop or violently vault over if you were feeling a little more gung-ho about the whole thing. The caves really were beautiful, even I thought so everyone was wandering from formation to formation like a child in a sweet shop.
To be perfectly frank that’s all there is to add. Nat very kindly left out the incident where I could have drowned in a rare display of polite consideration and a desire not to embarrass. Unfortunately for me, it’s too good of a stupid story to not reach the public eye. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I didn’t.