220090 tn?1379167187

A green flash

A green flash is the holy grail to any serious sunset watcher.  Being a serious sailor for 35 years, I saw plenty of sunsets, but no flash and began to think they were a fairy tale.  About ten years ago, I went on a dive vacation in Bonaire.  At sunset, I walked to the beach with my wife and a diving buddy that grew up in Brooklyn, had a biting wit and even looked a bit like Woody Allen.

We were standing on a west facing beach watching the sun start its decent to the horizon and we started to joke about the nonsense of expecting a green flash.  There was an elderly woman standing next to me.  She had the lined face and gravelly voice of a serious smoker and a martini in her hand.  She looked at me and said that she sees green flashes all the time at this beach.  I smirked and thought that if I drank as many martinis as she did I would see plenty of green flashes even without the sun!

Well, sure enough, as the last bit of the sun disappeared below the water, there was a pronounced green flash!  I saw two more since then, both of them anchored of the main town of St Bart's.  So in a lifetime of watching sunsets, I had seen three up to the other day.

My wife and I went out to dinner the other day and decided to drive to Siesta Key and watch the sunset.  Low and behold, not only did we see a green flash -- it was the best green flash we ever saw! It lasted longer and was greener than any of the others.

I hesitate to post this while a forum member is suffering so, but then I thought we could all use a diversion from the problems of HCV.  The beauty of a sunset and all the thoughts that go with it are one of the great gifts we have.

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476246 tn?1418870914
Thank you for sharing this beauty with us. As always, I enjoy reading your posts.

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Avatar universal
Cool story, thanks for sharing. Never heard of the green flash, I'll have to keep an eye out for it in the future. Your story reminded me of something I used to see while on an aircraft carrier. If you sat on the fantail at night while the screws were turning, you would see this ghostly glowing green trail being left behind in our wake. If you looked directly down at the boiling/burbling water just over the screws, you could see these little sprites of flashing lights coming off the screws themselves (although the screws were not directly visible). Apparently the whole thing is caused by the screws triggering a bioluminescent display from the tiny sea organisms getting churned up. It was something to see, and quite mysterious.

As a funny aside, once in a while a greenhorn would show up on the fantail and he'd invariably ask "What the hell is that??!" And we'd say "Shhhhh, don't tell anyone. We don't want to start a panic, but the ship's dumping nuclear waste right now. There's a serious problem with the reactor."  ;-)
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548668 tn?1394187222
Loved both of your stories which give me SOMETHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO that I haven't seen before :-) :-) :-).    I am determined now to see a green flash!!!!

My son is colourblind which has actually caused some memorable mother moments. When he was about six,  I was cleaning black shoes one day and he asked if he could help and picked up the tan shoe polish.  Then he frowned and said - 'but do you have any green shoes Mum?".  I asked him to go and look in the wardrobe and he came rushing out with a pair of tan shoes saying "You DO, You DO, you DO have green shoes Mum".  He was thrilled and started polishing them with the tan shoe polish :-).  

- just another little story to make us smile.  I hope he gets to see the 'flash' one day; I'm not too sure about the 'green' - he's a good artist and I'm always hoping he will paint exactly what he sees.

My Dad was colourblind - I was pretty sure my boy would be as it's carried by the female but comes out in the male!!
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405645 tn?1249701810
Thank you once again for taking me out of the world of HCV and reminding me of life’s beauties and nature’s wonders.

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220090 tn?1379167187
The flash is a very rare event.  In order to see it, the humidity must be fairly low, no clouds all the way to the horizon and relatively clear water.  You actually see part of the sun shining through the water and that is what causes the flash.

mremeet,  your story brought back memories of standing watch on  a sailboat and watching the wake of the boat and seeing the bioluminescence.

There is a bay in Vieques that is full of biolumenecent plankton.  No gasoline engines are allowed in the bay.  You can take an electric boat or kayak; there are tours that take you out on a large electric pontoon boat.  If you stand at the bow at night you can see the trails left by fish as the swim away from the boat.

We anchored in the bay and went for a swim.  Streams of light run down your arms when you lift them out of the water.  I felt like a small kid looking in wonder at the swimmers all making light shows as they swam.
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Avatar universal
I think anyone needs time to remember the nicer things in life
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303646 tn?1214947727
thats cool. we were fishing about110 miles sse of galveston and we were on a slick calm
I watched the sun go down and flash and it was awe inspiring. I have only seen one other and it was not as bright .
I am going to be a passenger on 8,2 cruising alaska. i can't wait to get to outside waters
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Avatar universal
I've never seen the green flash but I have fished with my Dad off the Atlantic
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303646 tn?1214947727
hey kerfluffle isn't kerplop and kerplunk some of your kin folk....
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374652 tn?1494811435
Oh yes I used to live in Venice Fl. and walked every night, I had the good fortune to see the green flash...and it reminded me of letting go, We really cant hold onto anything.
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Avatar universal
I'm adding this to my bucket list.  #4) See green flash.

Right after #3)  Ride in the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile

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163305 tn?1333668571
I saw my first green flash as a very young woman living in San Francisco on one of the few clear evenings at the beach. The sun sunk and gazowee! there was that line of pure glowing green before everything turned dark.
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99052 tn?1270983520
Thought about going to  Bonaire to snorkel once but ended up in Kauai. how is the snorkeling there? Do you have a favorite place to snorkel. I guess mine would be Kee or tunnels beach on the north shore of Kauai.
cherrs jeff
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220090 tn?1379167187
The snorkeling in Bonaire is good and the diving is great.  Much of the coral in the Caribbean has died off from bleaching due to the rise in the water temperature.  The best snorkeling in the Caribbean I have seen is now in Norman Island in the BVIs.  For some reason the coral is doing better there.
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458494 tn?1217168079
We live on our boat get out when Richard is feeling good, He is the capitan. He has seen it I am still waiting. We live on the west coast I will let you know when I do If it is as wonderful as the northern lights I am in for a treat. thank you Sherri.
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217229 tn?1192762404
Eric -

It's so funny that you've mentioned this. I to this day, have yet to see one - and thought they were a fairy tale.... I've looked everywhere - I 've waited - held my eyes open --- figured I blinked and missed it. I'd given up hope that they are true.

I believe it if you've seen it- then they exist.

That means I'm going to have to hold out hope again of one day seeing one.

That's too cool.

One martini too many --- eh?


How funny.

Love to you and Mafalda.

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92903 tn?1309904711
I know that bay, Near Esperanza, right?

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220090 tn?1379167187
That's the one!
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53186 tn?1225749549
They were a common occurance where I lived in Hawaii...........and you put your experience in eloquent words!  Thanks for the break.....
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208764 tn?1249429657
The first day I heard of them was in Mazatlan, MX and was the first day that I saw one as well... I know they exist and the Margarita probably didn't hurt at the time... didn't know anything about HCV in those and pray that I will soon forget what it was like trying to deal with it...

Here's the to flash! Whatever color you see it in... :-)
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315996 tn?1429054229
My daughter and I saw a green flash off of Kuai, north shoreish. We signed up for a "sunset cruise" on a sail boat. Besides the flash, we spent most of the time seasick. Bay was calm, but get outside into the real ocean, oi vay. Up and down.
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250084 tn?1303307435
That was a pleasant story and your so good at adding some beauty to this site filled with...many otherwise issues.

I've never heard of the green flash and , thanks to you, I will be watching many more sunsets that I have neglected to take the moments to watch....for too long now.

Thanks for the nice thoughts Eric, you have lived well :)

Helpful - 0
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