|Girls bunks, Camp Tamarac.|
You might well wonder what kind of scuba diving experience could be had in a pond in the Berkshires. Surprisingly, Yokum Pond reached 50 feet at its greatest depth. Still, its murky waters didn't allow for the type of diving one might expect to find in the Caribbean. In fact, you could barely see two feet in front of you. Nevertheless, during my last summer at Tamarac, the camp began offering its campers scuba classes and certification.
I enthusiastically signed up for the scuba program. All progressed well until one sunny day in August. I had come to the surface after a short dive and was using a snorkel while I swam back to the dock. The snorkel was necessary because the tank on my back was heavy and unwieldy, so I couldn't get my head above water to take breaths. As I paddled toward the dock with my flippered feet, feeling pleased with my diving progress, I allowed my head to sink a little too low. Instead of air, I suddenly found myself swallowing a sample of silty pond water.