the gauntlet…

i decided to go to the ferry dock this morning to check out the daily festivities.

these are known affectionately as “the running of the tourists”.

since tourists are the lifeblood of the dive shops on the island (all thirteen of them), the dive shops send several of their “representatives” to the dock in order to “greet” them.

the goal of the various divemasters and instructors that are on the dock is to divert (by any means possible) the tourists to their (and ONLY their) diveshop while navigating through a maze of “hostile” divemasters and instructors from “other” dive shops that are hell bent on “stealing” said tourists from the rightful owners.

* this is known as the “i saw them first” rule.

(the diving community here is very mature…for a bunch of twelve year olds)

the dive shop “reps” employ various tactics in order to receive the coveted pat on the head from their dive shop managers.

the wall: this is where seven or eight “reps” link arms and block the entire dock with a manoeuvre designed to envelope great groups of unsuspecting marks and directing (pushing) them down the proper road (usually to the right) to the proper dive shop.

* five or more marks delivered to and signed up with the proper dive shop gets the”rep” the coveted pat on the head plus the scratch behind the ear cluster.

the prevent defense: this is where groups of one or two “reps” intercept a rival group and engage them in friendly banter thereby distracting them and throwing them into a confused state by pretending to want to “get to know” them. this leaves the marks free to be netted by the wall.

the layer cake: three groups of two or more “reps” space themselves length wise along the dock and, while one group is distracting the marks, the other group is busily stuffing flyers full of “free” offers into the unsuspecting marks backpack and relieving them of the flyers from the other dive shops.

all of this, as well as the fact that nearly every truck on the island is trying to pick up freight at the same time, makes for quite a show.

take heart; once you get through this mass of greed this island is worth every minute of it.

you might want to shave your head, tape up your ears, and get your rugby moves down first, though.

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2 Responses to “the gauntlet…”

  1. eimi & tom Says:

    yo,
    we`ll be dressing up for the game tomorrow. and i think i have to make sure that zoe and i get our beauty sleep and snack before so that we are not to grumpy… and bite everybodys head off and push them into the sea!
    this kinda act is not one of my favorite. the last one we had was 2 days ago when a guy (smelling like a brekfast of champions…) followed us for about 30 min until he realised that i was much more stuborn than him!
    seaya tomorrow evening…

  2. I actually enjoy ‘The Wall’ !

    It’s sort of like playing ‘Red Rover Red Rover’ in elementry school PE.

    I’m just so sorry for that poor gals foot.

    Could she not see i had high heels to her flip flops?
    Never bring a knife to a gun fight 🙂

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