Louisa and Art
and I are sitting on the gunwale of the boat eating our lunch. A two-foot
remora, or sucker-fish, comes alongside. The top of his head is a plate which
looks like a tire-treaded suction cup. He uses it to fasten himself onto the
bellies of sharks. While he hitchhikes, he eats the living fish crumbs that
fall from the mouth of his predatory host.
can be an awful nuisance," Art says. "Once I and my brother were
fighting off this big tiger shark when this remora cuts loose from the shark's
belly and latches onto the inside of my thigh, here. I almost drowned, that
remora scared me so!"
shark?" Louisa asks.
"Oh, he got
rattled when his remora quit him. Anyway, he goes off to look for
He laughs again.
"Maybe this remora's shark is around here somewhere, looking for him,"
he says as he goes back for another sandwich.
sharkless remora will not latch on to us—or a shark—before our afternoon dive,
Louisa and I feed him great hunks of our own sandwiches. He is voracious. Coles
says, "He's had about $2.50 worth of Sir Victor's food now."
Suddenly we hear
Art call out from the stern.
Look what's coming."
We hear the
familiar, almost silent "plomp" as Art goes overboard. I think he
probably put flippers and mask on in midair.
A quarter of a
mile out I see two black triangles, rising and falling like the wing tips of a
snorkeling butterfly. They are fluttering our way.