Diving for Shells

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I get asked all the time about diving for shells.

“Where do you dive?”

“How deep do you go?”

“What kind of shells do you find?”

“Aren’t you worried about sharks?”

…and many many more questions.

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I appreciate all the questions asked. Now, I can answer some questions but not all.

“Where do you dive?”

This one is the most asked question.  Well, I cannot divulge where I dive. Every sheller has their honey holes as does every fisherman, shrimper and hunter. Some have found these spots by trial and error or by good old fashioned hard work. I will simply say that I dive all over the island as well as places like Little Hickory, Lover’s Key and Barefoot Beach. I have given my word that I will not divulge secret spots. I know that stinks and I am sorry.

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“How deep do you go?”

I have been known to go as shallow as a foot locally to as deep as 20+ feet in the Keys and the Caribbean. At about 15 feet, I can feel the pressure change. By about 20-22 feet, I’m about at my limit with a single breath. But I have seen some amazing things in deeper water.

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“What kind of shells do you find?”

Lots!

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Like this 18″ Horse Conch and huge Heart Urchins in Islamorada – which I still have yet to clean up.

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And this gorgeous Hawkwing Conch – same spot.

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Found this haul diving the island this past weekend. There are goodies out there. You just have to get into the deep water and get them.

“Aren’t you worried about sharks?”

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Sometimes, yes!

But I also play the odds and don’t go where it feels weird.

Read this article written by David McRee over at Blog The Beach. On a side note, our good friend Kim over at Snug Harbor did a great interview with him recently. Go check it out here.

One in 3 million odds.

Now I’m not gonna go shelling in some giant bait ball or near fishermen. That would be insane. I listen to my gut (and my diving friends) and pay attention to what I see and have seen in the water…

Let me also say that there are other things in the water that creep me out more than sharks……

“Isn’t the water really cold right now?”

Yes, the water is pretty daggone cold right now! I dove this past weekend with a water temp of 64 degrees. BRRRRRR. Good thing I have a wetsuit.

Unless you have one, you’re kinda on the crazy side to be getting in such cold water.

“Where is your favorite dive spot?”

Other than a couple of local spots, hands down it has to be the Caribbean (specifically The Cayman Islands and Cozumel), followed closely by the mid-Florida Keys. I’m sure the Shell Queen can confirm that. The Virgin Islands have amazing water. Grand Turk is just as beautiful. The Caribbean has the most beautiful, clear water that I have ever seen.

Diving is fun. It is also unsettling sometimes. But I think the payoff is always worth it!

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Mini Festival Tour Stop – October 2014

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Let me first apologize for the lack of blogging as of late. The hustle and bustle of life (as we all experience) has been getting in the way of the Queen and I having fun and gallivanting all over the State of Florida.

This month, the festival stop we had planned wasn’t going to make it into our schedule. So we decided to stay close to home, scoop up the in-laws and make a quick stop Oktoberfest at the German-American Social Club in Cape Coral.

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 I’m goin’ on several months now without meat on a stick and that doesn’t sit well with me. But the lure of bratwurst and beer overtook my senses and now I’ll have to wait until next month for something on a stick.

So every year, the German American Club of Cape Coral puts on Oktoberfest, filled with bands, Sauerbraten, Schweinshaxe (roasted ham hocks), beer, a carnival, beer, bratwurst, beer, Leberkaese (liver loaf) and beer. This one is their 29th year.

Not sure if I mentioned it, but there’s beer there.

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 We’ve never attended Oktoberfest before and were pleasantly surprised at how large it was. Typical of most festivals, there were many booths set up offering trinkets of all sorts and businesses offering their swag.

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 They also offered a pretty nice sized carnival area for the kids with quite a few little areas where children could (easily) win stuffed prizes.

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 But the highlight for me as always was the food. I really wanted one of those barbecued turkey legs, but since we’re at a German festival, we had to stick with the theme.

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 The father in law and I snagged a Bratwurst with Sauerkraut. As you can tell by the pic, my mother in law doesn’t eat sauerkraut and I am disappointed. Sorry doll, but you’re missin out! It was served on a thick, crispy German roll and was delicious.

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 The Queen and her mom settled for German Potato Cakes with apple mash. I snuck a bite and gotta say they were pretty daggone good.

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What better way to enjoy a Brat than with a nice, Beck’s Oktoberfest. The link review says it’s “dangerously drinkable”. They are correct. That’s some good beer, dude.

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 Some German Chocolate Cake to wash it all down.

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 Why stop there? How about a funnel cake with a freshly squeezed lemonade? Sure, I’ll have one….and I’ll follow all that with a nice little nap.

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Oktoberfest continues next weekend – the 24th-26th. If you’re in town, take a couple hours out of your day and stop by. I’m sure you’ll have a good time!