Bimini Miracles & Grace
by Linda Shay, Dolphin Ambassador and Retreat Leader
Let me paint a bit of a picture of the weeks and days leading up to our July 26 – August 1, Unity-Community Wild Dolphin Bimini Retreat with WildQuest.
Miracle #1 was that Mare Cromwell, Voice of Earth Mother, immediately said YES when I asked her to step in as trip co-leader back in February. Our trip was scheduled for April. Covid-19 wasn’t yet in the picture. Once that happened, and travel was affected, all was thrown into uncertainty. Whether or not our trip would happen at all was touch-and-go, multiple times.
All of us who were called to go on this adventure had to dive deeply within self, over and over, to explore and discover whether we did, indeed, feel safe to embark upon the travel required to swim with the Bimini dolphins. For some, it wasn’t so much our own safety but the safety of at-risk loved ones who share our living space. That was a big factor.
By the time we finally met in Ft. Lauderdale, we’d been through so much together. We felt instantly connected and already loved one another so much. It was pure JOY! It was an ecstatic moment to finally board those small charter planes bound for Bimini. We did it! We would soon arrive at our destination. How amazing and glorious that was!
On day one, we boarded the gorgeous DolphinQuest catamaran and traversed the most exquisite turquoise ocean water I’ve ever seen in search of dolphins. We were blessed to be met by five beautiful bottlenose dolphins, which was a wonderful surprise. I had expected/hoped to see the spotted dolphins on our first outing. These bottlenose were clearly inviting us to play, so we geared up and excitedly jumped into the water for our first up-close-and-personal encounter.
These dolphins were so very sweet and welcoming. It really did feel like they were welcoming us to Bimini! They enthusiastically swam through and around us, sonaring us and just loving us up. We were one happy human pod after that joyful encounter! I was quite buzzed that night from being zapped by their sonar a few times. We called it an early night. Our hearts were happy and full. We were grateful for a highly successful first day!
The theme of this trip was: We Come in Service. All of us came with the heartfelt intention of making a contribution to this sacred place on the planet, and all who reside within and upon this place, in the seen and unseen realms. On our remaining days, we did a sacred ceremony before getting onto the boat, and we opened our evening circles with ceremony. We gave thanks for and blessed the water, the land, the people, the dolphins, the Nature Spirits, and our spiritual guides and teams.
On day two, we were searching for dolphins for quite a long time with no success. A number of us reached out to them and called them in in our own unique way. Then, sure enough, a fast-moving gray blur appeared at the bow of the boat. “Dolphins!” a few of us exclaimed!
We waited and watched as five juvenile spotted dolphins approached the bow and then abruptly turned around and swam in the direction from which they’d come. Clearly, we were to follow them. Was this was an advance team sent to lead us to the larger pod?
We followed and followed and followed for quite a long time while those five young ones put on quite a show. We had so much fun watching them, that would have been enough for us! They kept swimming and we kept following. At one point I remarked out loud, “These dolphins traveled a very long way to come and get us!” We were in awe.
After about 40 minutes, we saw more fins at the surface ahead. We squealed with delight to discover we had arrived at the larger pod of 17 dolphins. Into the water we went for more spectacular spotted dolphin magic. Our group was learning how to stay together as a pod in the water. The dolphins were masterful at spreading their love among all of us. It was so inspiring to watch the WildQuest crew members dive DEEP, and then to see dolphins surround them and the ensuing human-dolphin underwater ballet. Exquisite!
I’m thrilled to say that we had perfect weather and perfect water conditions every day. We had spectacular snorkeling and dolphin encounters every day. And, we enjoyed being together as a human pod SO MUCH. We felt like we were contained in this bubble of pure Love, Joy, and Oneness where the chaos and stress of the world could not reach us. Indeed, we were in a different world – we were in Dolphin’s world!
Finding trust amid the unknown
Our retreat was scheduled to end Saturday, August 1. By Wednesday, news about an impending tropical storm was spreading. Here we were again, in the unknown of what was going to happen. Every morning and evening, we checked in with WildQuest about the storm and its implications for our trip. We were aware of the possibility that our trip would be cut short and that we would have to depart Bimini on Friday. We lived each day – each present moment – to the fullest. And we trusted.
Thursday was the day we made the awesome swim over the “Bimini Road” – believed to be the beginning of the rise of Atlantis. Later in the afternoon, a pod of 17 spotteds joyously swam to meet us and played with us for a long time. It was so much fun watching my human podmates having gorgeous encounters with these beautiful angels of the sea. Soon, more dolphins joined us and there were 23. The JOY factor just kept getting higher and higher.
As we were sailing (yes, sailing!) back “home”, another sweet pod of spotteds came to escort us. It felt like a send-off. That was when I knew this was going to be our last boat trip. And I was okay with that. My heart was SO full, we all received so much, I wanted for nothing more.
Sure enough, tropical storm (soon to be upgraded to a level 1 hurricane) Isaias was headed our way and we had to be off the island by noon Friday. The stress of the outer world started breaching our bubble of Peace, Love, Joy, and Harmony. Our hearts were SO full, we all did our best and supported one another so lovingly along the way. We felt complete. We’d done what we came here to do, and we received countless gifts and blessings in return.
Miracle upon miracle got us to Bimini, and safely back home. Our entire time on Bimini was wondrous beyond description. This entire Bimini adventure was one of pure Grace. What’s most present for me, upon reflection, is the stark contrast between the world of Man’s creation and the world of Dolphin’s creation.
My re-entry was rather rough and I remember feeling, on more than one occasion, I want to go back to Bimini! In very short order, though, Grace entered my world. The dust settled, and love and trust flowed. All is well in my world again, and I am grateful.
Frequently, images of Bimini, the dolphins, our bright, shiny podmates, and our magical adventures together spontaneously swim through my awareness. Everything about this trip was memorable in the best of ways. I am immensely grateful!
Thank you, beloved podmates, for persevering and for blessing us all with your radiant presence!
Thank you, WildQuest, for your pre-and post-retreat guidance and leadership, great accommodations, spectacular food, and tremendous skill, knowledge, and support on and in the water.
Thank you, Dolphins, for showing up for us so generously and abundantly in the physical, as well as in the realm of spirit and consciousness!
Thank you, spirit teams, for your incredible presence and support that resulted in more miracles than I can count.
Thank you, Mare Cromwell, for being an extraordinary co-creator on this grand adventure. Navigating these tumultuous and uncertain waters with you has truly been a privilege and JOY.
Learn more about Linda at www.dolphinity.com