Back from Jamaica! July 3, 2008
I'll be making a series of posts, but the first one is about scuba diving. Enjoy!
I was a bit nervous about it. Heading to the pool for the training, I was like I'm gonna drown. But they make you swim 8 laps around the pool without touching the side or bottom, and that pretty much got rid of the nervous feeling and made me exhausted instead :) Then you watch a video that teaches you some of the things that you will need to do. After that they suit you up, put you in the pool, then you try breathing underwater. That was crazy!
Of course, there are about 10 tricks that you need to know to stay alive while 40 feet below. The guy, Pablo, a Jamaican, taught you three of the ones that we'll need for a short, 30 minute excursion underwater. They were how to clear your mask if it gets filled with water, how to put your mouth piece back in if it gets knocked out or you lose it, and the last was how to equalize your pressure in your ears so you can go down 40 feet and feel perfectly comfortable. Then in the pool, they teach you this and Pablo watches each person as they do it at least twice perfectly. After that, Pablo made us swim from the shallow end to the deep end in a circle as long as we wanted, and practice equalizing our pressure. I swam in the pool for about 10-15 minutes, practicing these different techniques.
When we went on the dive, I was nervous again. They put an anchor in the water, you grab onto the rope and head down slowly, equalizing as you go, every 3-4 feet or so. It was very slow. You get down there, then go into what's called a "scuba chain", locking arms with everyone. This was uncomfortable since you're just kneeing there waiting for everyone, and when you're not moving, the bubbles you blow out just go in your face and you can't see anything. Then we went off to the reefs. So many colorful fishes and the water was beautiful. The one guy was taking pictures, and we managed to get one with the three of us that went down there. Overall it was an incredible time and I can't wait to do it again :D
I'll be posting that picture as soon as I get it from Zatko. In the meantime, check out the images as they get uploaded from the people that went. We have a Flikr group called "Zatko Wedding".