The Puffer Fish Has It Figured Out

Let me clarify.  I don’t mean just any old dive boat.  If I were merely out for a blissful day of diving, I would most likely NOT feel the overwhelming need to shave my legs.  However (and this is a BIG however), after spending several days on a liveaboard dive boat, one does tend to start feeling a bit…PRICKLY.

In a supreme effort to make the spiny little puffer fish of the sea not feel jealous of my overly prickly state, it became quite clear on our open-sea adventure that a leg-shaving expedition was in order.

On a 65-foot sailboat that accommodates upwards of 20 divers plus crew, living quarters can be quite cozy.  Before I go any further into my story, it is necessary to disclose that the only shower aboard our amazing vessel of adventure was located in the dining room—both shower and dining area being below deck in the belly of the boat.

Having safely made it down the ladder without bumping my head (some weren’t so lucky), I garnered a turn in the coffin (a.k.a. shower).  Oh, before I forget, it is also necessary to mention that each person was allotted 2 minutes of fresh water per day.  This was mandatory in order to maintain our water supply throughout the trip.  Showers were taken with salt water, and then rinsing was done with fresh water, allowing us to feel fresh and clean using only a slight amount of water per person.  Yay!

As you may have guessed, the shower area was tiny, so tiny in fact that if one happened to drop one's prized razor or bar of soap, one might not be able to retrieve it without causing quite a commotion.  Ok, the one was me.  I admit it.

If you find yourself in this situation, you might want to prepare for the instance when the boat hits the rogue 10-foot wave or decides to turn counter-current to every single wave in the ocean, in which case, you will be bodily thrown against the seemingly fragile side of the shower wall.  Your greatest fear at that point will be that you will be thrown, naked and half-soaped-up, into the dining hall where the rest of the stinky and tired divers are waiting for their turns in the tiny little shower stall.  You will imagine their looks of horror as you flail helplessly onto the table in all your glory, having lost your sense of balance somewhere between the first rogue wave and the attempt to retrieve your soap from the floor.

The best advice I can give is to hold your razor in your teeth.  Do not drop it.  That little thing will slide all over the floor, and it is impossible to grab when the boat is rocking.

Here is my next tip.  When comfortable in my own home, I make it a habit to prop my leg on the shower wall in order to shave.  Do NOT attempt this on the dive boat.  You will probably DIE.  At the very least, you will be thrown, in a one-legged death dance against the shower wall, creating a loud enough racket to draw others to the shower door, inquiring as to your general health and well-being.  This will result in your humiliation, and you will have to admit that you were attempting to shave your legs at sea.  I say this in all seriousness—everyone will laugh at you.

Also, you will end up using a good supply of the bandages onboard to stop your now-bleeding wounds (which hurt even more because you gouged yourself while shaving with SALT WATER!), and you might acquire the name of Shark Bait.  Oh, and you will not end up finishing the job, because the shower is the size of a COFFIN!  Did I already mention that?  So you will have one hairy leg and one leg that is half-shaved and half-mutilated.

In fact, now that I think about it, I would NOT suggest shaving on a dive boat.  Just go with the puffer-fish look and embrace the prickles.

Happy (Prickly) Diving!

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