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 Breathless in Samoa

"Jaja and I had snorkeled extensively in the clear waters of the Caribbean and the Pacific. We had a spear gun and had killed hundreds of fish for our dinner. Going underwater was second nature to me. The problem with Pago Pago harbor, however, is the water was dark brown and warm, like hot chocolate. I took a deep breath and went down about three feet. Then I remembered what Jaja told me. I took a sample breath. It worked. I hovered for a moment, looking around. Nothing in sight; I was locked in a brown, bubbly void. Panicked, I resurfaced and spit the rubbery thing out of my mouth. I gasped for air. The air around me stank of rotting fish, and of the ammonia the ships used for refrigerant."

 (Submitted by Noel Fri Jul 30, 2004 )
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