|CrystalblueoceanSailing and Diving Around the World|
sailing and diving around the world
We had a day off today, as we usually do on Sundays. We've officially started Divemaster training, so I spent most of the day going through the first 3 chapters of the DM manual. Just got back from dinner. This time we went to a taco place, just around the corner from the house, across the street from the main grocery store, 'Super Aki.' Tacos were cheap and delicious. I had seven tacos, 4 beef and 3 chicken. I could have eaten more :):)
Yesterday we did a bunch of skill testing, this time with Ken, one of the other instructors. Some of the skills we were put through I hadn't done before, so that was particularly interesting/exciting. The really interesting part about it is we had to explain what we were doing, to the rest of the group, as if we were explaining to students who'd never done any of this before. Of course, as Divemasters, we need to be proficient at demonstrating all the skills/techniques, above and below the surface. So, here is a list of what we did:
Equipent Assembly: Taking a full scuba tank, checking that it's hydrostatically up to date, putting on the BCD, hooking up the regulator hoses to the tank, making sure evertying is working order, etc. You actually have to smell the gas, and taste it, to make sure it's clean air.
Predive safety check (BWRAF, BCD, weights, releases, air, and final check): making sure the BCD is actually functional and we're able to inflate and deflate it. Making sure the weight belt is a right-hand release, so the dive buddy can remove the weight belt easily in an emergency situation. We check air again, and then the final check to make sure your dive buddy has mask, snorkel, fins, and any other dive gear required for that particular dive.
Deep water entry: stepping off a boat or dock into deep water.
Buoyancy check at surface: once the BCD is deflated, you should be able to take a normal breath and float at the surface at eye level. This tells you if you're weighted correctly.
Snorkel-regulator/regulator-snorkel exchange: just what is implies.... you take out your snorkel, exhaling with a small stream of bubbles, and switch to your regulator, then take out your regulator, exhaling a small stream of bubbles ( you never hold your breath underwater) put snorkel back in mouth.
Five-point descent (SORTED- signal, orientation, regulator, time, elevate, equalize, descend): give the hand signal to descend. Look to shore, then to open sea, then below the surface, to make sure all is clear. Take out snorkel and swtich to regulator. Note the time. Raise your inflator hose and deflate. Pinch nose to equalize. Descend.
Regulator recovery and clearing: take regulator out of mouth and drop, while underwater. Use technique to recover regulator.
Mask removal, replacement, and clearing: fill mask with water, take it off. Put it back on using proper technique, clear mask of water by breathing through nose, into the mask, while breaking the mask's seal from below your nose.
Air depletion excercise and alternate air source use (stationary): scenario is you've run out of air underwater and you need to use your buddy's alternate air source. You signal that you're out of air, your buddy gives you his octopus, the name given to the second regulator that every diver carries, and you breath from his/her air source, then ascend.
Alternate air source-assisted ascent: same as above, but this time we actually surfaced.
Free-flow regulator breathing: your regulator might suddenly start to discharge air continuosly. You need air, so this technique allows you to breath the air even though the regulator isn't in your mouth. You are 'sipping' the air as the burst of air bubbles go flying past your mouth.
Nuetral buoyancy: you adjust your BCD with just enough air so that you can hover.
Five-point ascent (STARS- signal, time, arm, rotate, swim): you signal that the dive is over and it's time to surface, you make note of the time because that is the official end of your bottom time, hold your arm straight up above you, rotate while you're rising, and swim to the surface.
Controlled emergency swimming ascent: if you have to make an emergency ascent, this technique teaches you to expell your air as you head to the surface.
Hover motionless for 30 seconds: neutral buoyancy. You have to start from lying on your stomach on the bottom, and begin to put tiny bursts of air into your BCD to get neutrally buoyant so you can hover.
Underwater swim without a mask: just what it says :) You have to remove your mask, swim a distance away, swim back to starting point, replace mask and clear it of seawater. This one was neat because I had to have my eyes open in sea water for the first time. It was a snap.
Remove and replace weight system underwater: take off weight belt and put it back on.
Remove and replace scuba unit underwater: take off BCD and attached tank and put it back on.
Remove and replace scuba unit at surface:
Remove and replace weight system at surface:
Vertical, head-first skin dive:
Swim at least 15 meters/50 feet underwater on a single breath while skin diving:
Snorkel clear using the blast method after ascending from a skin dive:
Snorkel clear using the displacement method after ascending from a skin dive: this was something new to me. When you ascend, your snorkel mouthpeice has to be above the end of the snorkel, so that as you expell the air from your lungs, through the snorkel, you'll breach the surface and the snorkel tube will be empty and you can breath normally out of without having to purge it with the blast method.
The first picture is of the whiteboard that is in on the wall in our house. As we go through the various stages of the DM program we check them off indicating completion. I'm now able to start checking them off :):) Woohoo!!! The other pictures are of the restaurant we ate in this evening, the chicken place (Pollo Perris) that we go to all the time, and Dave, and American ex-pat that came over to join us at our table. Cool guy. We exchanged contact info so I can join him for a night on the town. Going to have some cool, and perhaps, strange stuff to post for you guys. There are lots of 'dives' here in Mexico, which everybody loves, and we'll definitely be checking some of them out.
The video is of a few of the neighborhood kid who come into the restaurants and sing songs for the geusts and get a few pesos for their piggy banks.