It was a lovely sunny day. I woke up happily and excited to attend the Marine Rescue Day. It was organized by FXU Community Action and they booked us a small coach for 16 students. Although it was bright outside, the weather was pretty cold and windy! It did not take very long to reach Silver Dolphin Centre. The place isn’t as formal as I thought but it looks lovely!
We were first briefed about some issues on marine wildlife and conservation. The trainer – Dave, was an interactive speaker. He definitely played a good role in educating us and creating awareness. It is never easy to keep everyone interested and pay attention to a talk but he nailed it! After all the theories, it was time to get wet and start the practical! Before that, we had about an hour break for lunch.
We all changed into our dry suits and booty. I almost forgot how tight this suit can be and I really had a hard time putting it on! Moreover, in a tropical country like Malaysia, I had always wore knee-length wet suit which is so much easier to slip in. A few helped to pump in air and pour water into the fake dolphin. The second I picked the air- and water-filled dolphin with the rest of the people, I realised how heavy it was. The truth is a real dolphin can weigh heavier than that. It wasn’t an easy task to carry a dolphin for too long, even when there was eight of us!
We carried it all the way to the shore. My plan was not to get too wet as I was having my period but by the end of the lesson, I was soaked wet from neck to toe! My dry suit was not tight fitting (not exactly my size) and water could actually flow through. All I could say is, it was really cold in the water! As Dave guided us through the rescue procedure, I will always remember him saying, if given a choice, he would rather see them swimming in the sea than stranded on shore. It is better to dive among the dolphins than having to save one. Attending courses to get a first aid or rescue cert is another thing as really saving a human or wildlife! Of course, practice makes perfect. The more we do it, the better we will be because we get familiarised with the procedure.
By the end of the day, we all received a certificate for attending this course. The feeling of achieving and learning something new is really satisfying! I will never know whether one day in the future I will come across a stranded or wounded dolphin but at least I have the knowledge and will be prepared to save one!