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A Very Sharky Birthday in South Africa

Now y’all know I don’t usually post so quickly after an event… I like to process my travel thoroughly and then write about it. But today was just too brilliant, and I had to share ASAP. My magnificent fabulous 30th birthday extravaganza yesterday was washed out by torrential downpours and a hailstorm the likes of which I’ve never before seen, even in crazy Florida weather. So my plans, which have been in place for ages, were washed down the drain, and my actual birthday was a disappointment.

Fortunately, my pity party was short lived and my birthday festivities were rescheduled for today beginning at 4 a.m. Have a look at how I celebrated the big three-o.

My party dress

My birthday party venue

My first party guest

Bite marks in the party decor? Party on!

Mmmmm appetizers!

This is my favorite picture of the day, for obvious reasons! The shark swam right up to the cage and took a big ole bite of buoy, so I was able to quickly snap this shot. My only birthday wish this year was that a shark would try to eat me while in the cage, and it came true!

I even slapped a video together, but sorry – there’s no music or editing or bells & whistles this time. I think you’ll find my outbursts of joy are soundtrack enough. I really wanted you to share with you on the same day it happened… then it’s a bit like you were all here to celebrate with me. (And furthermore, I just wanted to thank all you readers, not just for the birthday wishes yesterday, but for virtually traveling with me this amazing 29th year. I have no regrets and only opportunities and more big fun ahead. Thank you thank you thank you!)

For more shark coverage and of course, the unbelievable stories from the rest of the journey, stay tuned!

Want to experience Great Whites up close? I went with The White Shark Diving Co. in Gansbaai, South Africa.

 So, what do you think about my birthday party? Would you do it? Do you find it ironic that I will literally run screaming bloody murder away from a cockroach and yet Great White Sharks are as innocuous as puppies to me?

COME AWAY WITH ME!
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  • November 14, 2011

    Woohooo!!! I’m scared just watching this! So happy that you’re birthday wish came true!

    • November 16, 2011

      Wish you were here to celebrate with me! We’ll have a party for both of us at Christmas =)

  • November 14, 2011

    Angie this is so inspiring. I love how you are grabbing life by the horns and owning it! I’ve got 8 months to think of how I’m going to spend my 30th birthday, I think you’ve seriously upped the ante here 😉

    • November 16, 2011

      Can’t wait to see what you come up with!

  • November 14, 2011

    i don’t know whether to “like” this post or give it a very huge thumbs down. eeeeeeeek ange! x10!

    but i guess…yay for the big 3-0? bahhhh! you’re insane friend!

    LOVE!

    • November 16, 2011

      Aren’t you glad you have a friend like me to entertain you?! Thanks for my iTunes gift card – now THAT’s an awesome birthday gift =)

  • November 15, 2011

    Oh. My. Gosh!! This is so epic. What a birthday!!

    I have “cage diving with Great Whites” on my bucket list, and I hope to cross it off one day in South Africa like you did!

    Glad to hear that your birthday was awesome, even if it did take 2 tries!

    • November 16, 2011

      I think it’s a must for any serious bucket list! Can’t wait to read about it when you do it!

  • November 15, 2011

    Looks much more fun than breaking up with a boyfriend and stressfully closing on a condo; which is what I did for my big 3-0! So glad your birthday wish came true. Here’s hoping your 30s are as much fun as yours 20s.

    • November 16, 2011

      Ewww breakups on a birthday – that’s terrible!

  • November 15, 2011
    Antoinette B.

    One of the things I’ve always wanted to do in life!!! It’s so freaking awesome! I met a girl from South Africa while I was in Croatia over the summer and she said if I go visit her, we’d see the Great White Sharks! Totally enjoyed your video! This just made me want to go to S.A. even more! And belated Happy Birthday!!

    • November 16, 2011

      Definitely do it as soon as you arrive in South Africa… because if you love it like I did, you’ll need time to schedule your second trip!

  • November 15, 2011

    this looks awesome!!!

  • November 15, 2011
    Ashley

    I am so excited for you! That is such a cool video and you can just hear your excitement! Happy 30th Angie 🙂 Maybe one day I will be able to be in a shark cage as well I am so jealous!!

    • November 16, 2011

      It was the best way to kick off a new decade!

  • November 15, 2011

    Happy birthday! No, that is nothing like I did for my 30th haha. You look 25!

    • November 16, 2011

      Haha thank you! I hope to stay this way =)

  • November 16, 2011

    Yikes! Happy Birthday – certainly a unique choice of company =)

    • November 18, 2011

      Thank you… it was an unusual party to say the least!

  • November 16, 2011

    Happy birthday! I also celebrated my 30th on the road a few months ago. It is somehow a little more special when you’re somewhere new.

    • November 18, 2011

      I agree! Now I’m trying to decide where to spend 31 =)

  • November 17, 2011

    I KNEW this was what you were planning! Glad your birthday wishes came true!

  • November 17, 2011

    Heck yeah!!!!!!!! This is one of my most favorite travel memories…I did it about 4 years ago and will never forget it. I’m turning 30 this year and can’t stop thinking about how I want to celebrate my big day too. HAPPY BIRTHDAY GORGEOUS!

    • November 18, 2011

      Oooh I can’t wait to hear what you decide! Thanks for the birthday wishes =)

  • November 20, 2011

    That sounds like the BEST birthday…EVER! And definitely one you will remember 😉

    Happy Birthday!

    • November 21, 2011

      It was! Exactly what I was hoping for =)

  • November 21, 2011

    I love shark diving and would love to do it with great whites. Sounds like an incredible and memorable way to celebrate your birthday and you couldn’t have asked for more entertaining birthday “guests”. 🙂

    • November 21, 2011

      It certainly was unforgettable! You will love it!

  • November 21, 2011

    Yay! Happy birthday! That looks like an AMAZING experience! Jealous!

    • November 21, 2011

      It was incredible – I’m still over the moon about it a week later!

  • November 23, 2011

    No would never do it. Would die of a heart attack.
    My 30th was spent sliding around the mud at the Durham Beer Fest! Hey at least we had wet weather that was common.

    • November 24, 2011

      That sounds fun and possibly less dangerous!

  • November 23, 2011

    Very jealous! This is one of the things I REALLY want to do but have yet to manage. Looks stunning!

    • November 24, 2011

      Definitely be sure to tick it off the list at some point. Well worth the visit!

  • March 14, 2012

    Oh my God my heart literally skipped a beat during the video! That shark was incredibly close! It must have been amazing 🙂

    • March 14, 2012

      That was definitely one of my top 5 moments of a year of travel – breathtaking and scary and exhilarating!

  • January 02, 2013

    Angie this looks amazing! And so high up on my bucket list. LOVE your exclamations too. “He’s feisty!” Haha. Happy (belated) birthday!

  • June 22, 2013

    Angie Away thanks for sharing these great images and your trip! Can’t wait to check out your Alaska trip and look forward to your post!

  • October 04, 2013

    Absolutely brilliant way to celebrate your birthday! I think that the shark had a great time too!

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