SCUBA stories

Note: Time moves fast. I wrote this almost two years ago, back when I was living on Malta. I don't feel like changing it; but I'm not on Malta anymore and whilst I still need food and gasoline I'm not worked as hard anymore (yay). On the flipside, no more sunny island diving life either. Then again I racked up a good 40-45 dives there and haven't written all I can about them yet. So for you, the reader, it probably doesn't matter a bit anyway.

Ever since I’ve moved to Malta and not been partying nearly as much as I’d need to generate enough stories to keep up a site like this I’ve been wondering what to do about that. I can’t party as much as I’d like to since I need to work a shit ton. I need to work a shit ton because I need food and gasoline, and I happen to like living in a sunny Mediterranean island. They give me one day a week off and that free time is too precious to spend hung over (sorry). Additional perks of this whole ‘working hard’ malarkey include plentiful money, free food, free diving and a plethora of other things. Since I’ve only got the one day a week off, and with partying pretty much ruled out I decided to try another hobby: SCUBA diving. And boy is it ever awesome. So to recap; no more partying and stories filled with reckless abandon because of work, but the work enables exploratory adventures under water. Every dive is different and I’ve even gotten my hands on some submersible cameras, a set of circumstances that lend themselves well for incorporation into a website. So here’s the deal: I’ll be logging my dives on here, describing them and where applicable showing off my awesome underwater photography skills (point and shoot). The upshot is that I’ve got something to put on here to talk about, the downside is that I’ve now become one of those assholes that shoves their hobby in your face. Before moving on to my dives, here’s a few reasons why I enjoy this so much

It’s an adventure
Although modern SCUBA diving is very safe, make no mistake; you’re still strapping on what is essentially life support gear. Recreational dives take place at depths anywhere from 0 to 40 meters, in the upper regions of this it’s relatively safe to ‘bolt to the surface’ in case of a problem, but on the deeper end that is quite a hazard in and of itself. Combine that with the fact that if your air supply were to fail you’ve got precious little time to remedy the situation, for reasons you can probably imagine. This thought is always at the back of my mind, which makes routine tasks such as swimming slowly, managing air supply & consumption and keeping an eye on your fellow divers more exciting than they have any right to be by themselves

Total freedom
ovement underwater is in ‘full 3D’ if I may steal a tagline from many a cinema these days. You can go in all directions and with some practice it becomes almost second nature to glide mere centimeters away from the bottom, or hang suspended twenty meters over a wreck or whatever else there is below you. Underwater scenery is often spectacular and there’s nothing quite like a slow swooping descent over an underwater cliff from 15 to 30 meters down.

It’s a work-out
Even though you generally strive to move as little as possible (to conserve air) a full dive is still a good workout. You’re spending a good hour in (sometimes cold) water, swimming almost all the time. Additionally, before and after there’s a good deal of lugging the fairly heavy equipment around. All in all, after a good day of SCUBA diving I usually lie in bed or in a hot bath enjoying a pleasant muscle burn.

It’s incredibly relaxing
his sounds like the complete opposite of the previous point, but while diving can be hard work, everything goes so slowly and there’s a very singular, focused quality to a good relaxing dive. The only things on my mind during one will typically be ‘how’s my air doing? How’s my buddy doing? Am I going up? Or down?, Hey look, a nice fish. No time or inclination at all to think about deadlines, cell phones, e-mails or any of that pesky modern-world bullshit. Typical cell phone signals only penetrate a few meters of water anyway so down there I’ll be safe for a while yet Anyway that’s as much as an insight you’re going to get for now, look below for my (hopefully ever growing!) dive log!

Update: Yeah about that ever growing dive log.. I've currently logged about 50 dives and lost the actual book. Not great progress on that, but there's always the future in which further pages may or may not appear