By: Ava Hall It was a relaxed night in striking Hawaii when my family went out to a dinner “full of polite conversation”. Inside the restaurant there were decorative fish tanks EVERYWHEREwith tons of fish surrounding us. My brothers and I took a break from dinner and decided to look around outside. My brother Mason is someone who likes to explore places, so of course we walked to a different hotel. I said “this is not a good idea Mason. Mom and dad don’t know we are leaving, they’ll be worried, we’ll come back, they’ll get mad, and we’ll get punished!” Mason was still determined to go and he talked us into going with him. When we walked in it was so beautiful! The hotel was decorated in the theme of “a starry night.” There were golden stair casesand when we looked up at the ceiling it looked like stars. At first I thought it was an open roof! Mason and I walked to the information desk and were starting to look at brochures when one just caught our eyes. It was crazy! There were people inside a cage with sharks swimming around them! We grabbed it so fast the brochure almost flew across the room! I started looking and so did Mason. We took a break from reading and just stared at each other. Then we dashed to the desk and said at the same time to the lady there, “What time do they have an opening tomorrow!?” We just had to do this, right there, right then. We called our mom and Dad and told them about it. They said they would be there in a second. When they came we were so excited when we showed them the brochure. We told them what time the next days’ opening was and that is was really safe. We talked them into it! The next morning we woke up early, got dressed, ate breakfast, and scurried down stairs to jump into the van. When we got there, there were chickens running around everywhere and my dad almost ran over one. We walked over to the boat with the guide and hopped on board. Then something caught our eyes. It was the (giant metal prison cell that floats) cage! We were about 15 minutes away from getting in the cage when it got really intense. The guide was giving instructions, the other family was blabbing on and on, and I started to realize that I was going to jump into a cage with man eating fish surrounding it! “Okay Ava time to jump on in”. I was freaking out. A tear dripped and several followed soon after. But then I decided just to try it becauseI knew I might be giving up a great opportunity. I was about to jump in the cage when the guide stopped me. Apparently there is a special way to jump to your doom! When he pushed the cage out I knew I had no chance of escaping and back onto the boat, so I just stayed in the middle of the cage with my dad. I then went under water with my dad and I saw a Galapagosshark. Then the shark saw me and it looked like he was coming forward to eat me! But when he got close, he turned the other way. I went up for air and my dad moved to one of the Plexiglas windows in the middle of the cage. So I went to the other window with my mom. It was just amazing as there were sharks everywhere. There were even more sharks than there were chickens! We went up for air and I didn’t go back under right away. Instead, I just put my face in and saw a little hammer head shark swimming under the cage. I put my head up
and told my dad. I asked if he saw anything really cool and he said that a jelly fish came through the cage bottom and then escaped out one of the sides. I said, “That’s ok” with fake shifty smile (he knew it was fake). Ten minutes after we got out of the cage, the captains assistant opened a bucket filled with breath taking (and not in a good way) smelly, dead fish. We watched him throw the fish out for 5 min. and the sharks were almost jumping out of the water like orcas to get these fish. One gigantic shark actually did jump for it! Then the other group got into the cage and that’s when things got boring. While we were waiting, the guide told us that the youngest person to go in the cage was 2 YEARSOLD!!!!!!!! I felt embarrassed that I considered not doing it. I learned that some of the best experiences are the ones that take you out of your comfort zone and I’m proud to say I did it!