From the Dive Boat

After doing my first dives (on Koh Tao, as it happens) last October, I’d kind of… strongly recommended (read: forced) the idea on my family. Not to say there was much objection, I suppose, but I realized maybe only as we were on our way to Koh Tao that I’d never really asked anyone what their feelings on diving would be. I mean. I only think it’s one of the most mind-blowing-but-simultaneously-relaxing/meditative/cathartic-experiences-one-can-have, and it’s my personal opinion that everyone needs to spend a little more time underwater, but I guess I should have left a little more room for choice in the matter.

Of course, there was choice ultimately: dive or not dive? Well, I guess the praises I’d been singing had not fallen on deaf ears. So then: Discovery Scuba Dive or full-blown Open Water Course? After a quick chat with Andreas at Alvaro, Ryan was definitely on board for the full course (at the time his pockets were still ‘overfloweth-ing’), Dad and Nate were undecided, and Mom was pretty sure she just wanted to do the DSD. By our second morning on the island everyone was ready to get in the water!

jesse overseeing equipment set-up training

normally there’s a cute little ‘alvaro’ dinghy to take divers to the dive boat, but the tide was too low before our first dive. so approximately 86 of us piled into the back of a pickup truck (that needed bump-starting, and that had been sitting in the sun, causing everyone to scald the bottoms of their feet as they climbed into the bed! funny in that kind of… painful way. ohhh thailand!) and headed over to shark bay where the water was a bit deeper.

(yes that’s a ‘RUN BKK’ [in the style of ‘RUN DMC’] shirt mom’s rocking. loves it!)

So I ended up doing my standard fun dives whilst the family got trained up. Personally, I love the way Alvaro handles the Open Water courses. Not that I had a bad experience whatsoever with Crystal when I did my own Open Water, but it was run in the common-to-nearly-universal (or so I thought) way where the first set of basic-skills training takes place in a swimming pool. With Alvaro, new divers are taken to a shallow bay where they learn some skills, and then basically get an extra dive as they make their way to the boat once they’ve shown they’re worth their salt when it comes to clearing masks. I think it’s a great way of doing things! Unfortunately, as it turns out, diving really isn’t for everyone, as Mom discovered when she encountered those minor problems of feeling supremely uncomfortable in the equipment/in the water/in general, and not exactly being able to.. you know, sink. Just the small things that come in really handy when trying to dive. But mad props for giving it a go Mamacita! As for the boys, they all ended up hooked and Dad and Nate decided to do the full course as well. Hooray!

the diving family!

darn! my dive finished before theirs and i’d already changed out of my wetsuit.

This ended up being my busiest dive weekend to date: I completed 6 dives, including tagging along with Jesse and the boys on their last dive towards their certification, and another set of wonderful dives with Nate on our last day. (For the first the boat took us to a spot about an hour away called Southwest Pinnacle. Eugene led the dive, which is always a fun experience, and we caught a glimpse at an enormous grouper, marveled at the most hypnotizing of anemone fields, and played with some batfish at the end.) In between I got to dive with my old buddies, as they’d finally made it to the island!

lounging at the dive shop, awaiting our next dives.

we had half an hour to kill before entering the water at one dive site, so entertained ourselves with some cliff jumping.

and chris and jean did some snorkeling (they were also doing open water certification)

professional interview amongst DMTs

fish kiss

after (before?) we dived together

congratulations open water divers!

off to shark island for my final dive it what may be a long time! glad you could be along, nate! (and there shooooould be some underwater shots on their way that i took on jesse’s camera.)

thanks so much, alvaro, for another great diving experience!

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2 thoughts on “From the Dive Boat

    • You can’t dive if you’ve had Scarlet Fever? Bummer! Have you looked into Freediving at all? Where are you in Thailand (though of course I’m checking your blog now and will probably get an answer).

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