23 Jul


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“Be decisive. A wrong decision is generally less disastrous than indecision.” - Bernhard Langer

Thirty-fours later and seriously jet lagged, I landed in Cairns, gateway to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

What an amazing place located in the tropical far North of Queensland.

My time in this beautiful place was only five days as I was participating in a mentorship program.

Prior to the last day, my mentee suggested that I visit the Great Barrier Reef.

He said, “If you don’t see the Great Barrier Reef, you’ll have missed the majestic beauty of Australia.”

“Next time.” I said.

Seriously?” he prodded.

That same day I reluctantly booked the tour and it was slated for the next day.

Everyone boarded the catamaran and we set sail for the Great Barrier Reef.

During the two-hour sail, I met a young lady who was studying to be a teacher.

We had a great discussion as she was asking numerous questions about my teaching career.

As we approached the reef, the helmsman asked if we wanted to swim to the reef or use the dinghy.

I wasn’t a seasoned swimmer so I chose the dinghy as the catamaran neared the reef.

Besides, there were shark looking creatures in the water.

Before long, everyone was having a blast snorkeling and experiencing an array of beautiful coral and marine life.

What a sight!

I thought that I would explore the sand dunes area first before snorkeling.

I remember what the helmsman said about this area.

He said, “Don’t go past the roped off areas on both sides as it is an automatic $10,000 fine and you can’t leave the country without paying it.

This area of the reef was a protected bird sanctuary filled with so many beautiful species.

It was breathtaking beyond words.

Later as I was snorkeling, I noticed that the young lady that I met on the catamaran was out past the shallow area and was beginning to drown.

I was probably twenty feet from her at the time.

My first instinct was to save her from drowning however a stingray was right in my path.

I remember hearing about the unfortunate death of Steve Irwin and my reptile brain sprang into action with all kinds of red flags and alarms.

Now adrenaline, epinephrine, and cortisol hit me like a bolt of lightning.

My rational brain was saying, “You know that it won’t touch you if you don’t give it any attention.”

Without hesitation, I Immediately swam towards her and brought her to the shore.

As soon as I reached the shore, one of the catamaran crew attended to her.

That was a day that I will never forget.

Thank God for that decisive moment.

Carpe Momentum

Coach Franco Cianflone


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