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YOUR Resort Dive

Discussion in 'New Divers and Those Considering Diving' started by Pixurman, Jan 2, 2001.

  1. Pixurman

    Pixurman Angel Fish

    Many divers started with the 'resort dive' or 'discovery dive' as their intro to scuba. I know that the vast majority of introductory dives are very safe but I am regularly astonished to hear the stories some relate.

    I am interested in hearing about your 'less than smart' intro dive. And to prime the pump, I'll start with mine.

    Seven years ago I did my introductory dive at Crystal River, FL. We had a blast and became certified shortly after. I wasn't far into my certification course when I realized how unsafe that first dive was. We learned and demonstrated regulator and mask recovery and were told that we would make a brief stop at 15 ft during ascent. We were not told that we were entering the spring's cave with about 10 other divers. We entered the cave at about 25 ft and went to the far end of the chamber where a small spring head is found at 50 ft. Visability went from 20 ft outside the cave to about 2 ft from 15 set fins stiring up the bottom. I just happened to follow the right diver out of the cave. This dive was far out of our skill set .... it had all the potential of being one of those tragic stories we all read about. Fortunately, the outcome was a happy one and another avid diver was born.

    So, what's YOUR story?

  2. Warhammer

    Warhammer Manta Ray

    I had always wanted to try SCUBA, just never seemed to find the time and opportunity. My wife had tried it while in college and then became certified a few years later, but never really got into it. We went to St. Thomas 2 years ago to get married. She encouraged me to give it a whirl, so I signed up for the Discover Scuba lessons and dive. When the class started that morning we had 8 students, we watched a few videos, listened to a lecture from the instructor, took a test, and then got in the pool in full scuba. Immediately upon drawing my first breath from under water, I knew I had found something I would get great pleasure from. Other students weren’t so sure. Immediately 2 of them quit. Just couldn’t take the claustrophobia effect. We practiced reg recovery, mask clearing, primary/octo exchange, reg/snorkel exchange, ear clearing and then swam along the bottom of the pool for a while. When we finished the pool work, we had 3 students left. The others dropped out during the reg exercises. Then one of the other girls that did complete it said it wasn’t for her and she wouldn’t go on the dive. So the other student, myself, 2 instructors, a DM, and a few other certified divers boarded the boat for our dive. During the dive brief my instructor told me I was not to touch my inflator hose, as she would control my buoyancy. We did a giant stride entry and wouldn’t you know it, I forgot to hold my mask in place. As I was hitting the water, the captain yelled, “Hold your mask!” I managed to grab it before hitting the water and when I surfaced he said, “Man your quick!” My instructor took me down the anchor line and then signaled for me to move away from it slightly, to make way for the other divers, and she went back up to assist another diver that was having problems descending. While she was on the surface, I started floating up. I wasn’t real sure that I was, cause the vis was virtually unlimited. I remember thinking to myself, “Man the water is so clear it looks like I’m just under the surface.” Well as it turned out, I was. I had floated all the way back up from 30’. When my instructor got back down, she couldn’t find me. I could see her fine, as I was right above her. She looked up and saw me, came back to surface, and let it be known that I’d given her a near heart attack! We went back down, and besides the frequent buoyancy adjustments she made for me the rest of the dive was uneventful. I was in heaven, I couldn’t believe the beauty of the reef, the fish life was extraordinary to me, and I was hooked no doubt. After we got back to the dive shop, I immediately inquired about taking the full course, but was disappointed that my time left there wouldn’t allow it. But they did let me sign up, for the rest of the shallow dives while I was there and my instructor, who had planned to be off the rest of the week, decided to stay and be my personal guide. Extremely nice lady, she was. And aside from the first mishap she took extra good care of me the rest of the time, never getting more than a few yards from me. On subsequent dives, I saw my first nurse shark, dug for treasure, and just had a marvelous time! So I guess I’m one of the Discover Scuba Diving success stories. Winter had set in here at home, so my OW course was delayed until spring. But as soon as it got warm enough, I took it, and have been diving ever since.

    Man that was a mouth full.:)
  3. ScubaBaby

    ScubaBaby Loggerhead Turtle

    My first experience of actual diving was great but unfortunately the lead up was terrible.
    I was in Greece and my dad was going through the paces of his O/W course.
    Both me and my mum have a fear of water (my mum got whipped by jellyfish and when i was 4 i went down a flume and had 6 lifeguards jumping into the 6ft deep pool as i went to the bottom!)
    My dads diving instructor was trying to get me and my mum to do a try dive with a group. We were at tad arguementative at the idea at first but finally persuaded after about 3 days of getting everything we wanted!
    Anyway, we paid out £30 and met up at the dive centre to be joined by approx. 25 other people. Being as both me and my mum were making pretty wet patterns on the floor this didnt really help our confidence in the instructors when there was only actually 2 instuctors.
    They split the group up into 2 - which eased our minds slightly.
    My dads instructor had arranged it so that if we went on the 1st dive then we could meet him and my dad out in great watery thing and my dad would know we did go through with it! Anyway, we got TOLD we were in the 2nd dive by this instructor leading our group and was HE was incharge. Charming!
    After that me and mum werent to happy about this dive but we werent going to let some power hungry idiot get in our way until he gave us our wetsuits. We started putting them on and me and mum just laughed. The armpits were round our waists were they were sagging, the stomach was sagging at out knees and the chest at our stomachs and i could have probably fit my waist in the leg! We asked if it was ok, and his response was: "It'll do for you."
    Me and mum arent quiet when we get angry :argue: and we speak our mind. We asked if we could change them for some that fitted a little better and he just gave back attitude. :fire: So we took off our wetsuits dropped them on the floor at his feet (in the sand!) and walked away. We both felt uncomfortable and as we were both scared of water, it was like trusting him with our lives - and there was no way that was going to happen.
    At about 2pm my dad and his instructor appeared asking where we'd been. We told them what happened and the instructor was appaulled at the other instructors behaviour as he had already been informed that me and mum were nervous of water. So, it ended up that me, mum, dad, 2 instructors and 2 snorkellers went out for a dive together later on.
    Mum hated it, I fell in love and have never looked back since! :1st:

  4. gozumutti

    gozumutti Barracuda

    I had dreamed of doing this for last 5 years, but never managed until this New Year's. I gave my husband an ultimatum: I am going to the Red Sea to learn to dive during Xmas vacation. If you wanna come along, fine, if not, not. Well, he came along.

    I had never been underwater and had no idea what was waiting for me. My ideas were limited to old Jacques Cousteau films :)

    We signed up for the PADI Open Water Certification course, because that was what the travel agent suggested. That was a mistake, because I simply lost money on that one.

    We showed for the course a day late (the travel agency had bungled the booking and we had to run around straightening things out while the course started) and got right into theory. So far so good. We had no trouble at all with the theory and the videos and I was pulling at the bit to get into the water.

    Second Day, First time out, just off beach: The Divemaster demonstrated (on the surface) clearing masks, retrieving a reg, etc. all of which LOOKED easy enough. My problems started when I put my head underwater. I simply freaked. My head was telling me strange things, such as: you are underwater, so you can't breathe. NOTHING could keep me underwater for more than 15 seconds. Well, that was that. I walked up the beach, removed my gear and figured it just wasn't for me.

    An hour later, the rest came out of the water and my husband asked what the h*** happened to me, but I had some difficulty explaining it, because I was not really sure: it was just some kind of panic. The instructor and the divemaster said nothing.

    The next day, I scrounged together whatever courage and dignity was left to me and went out on the boat with the rest of them to give it another try. We went out to Magawish and anchored. Everyone into the water with the instructor. Well, this time I lasted about 30 seconds, twice yesterday's time :) I got back on the boat and waited for the rest to come back.

    Again the instructor said nothing.

    The fourth day, I went out AGAIN and the same thing happened. I figured, what the heck, I will just enjoy a nice boat ride, get some sun and catch up on some reading. When we returned to the base in the late afternoon, the instructor told me to get my gear on and come down to the beach with him. He said "Now we are going to see if this works at all for you. Just relax. We are not in a hurry.*
    He had me put my head in the water (with all the gear) and take it again, over and over. Finally, after I seemed to do be able to do that without running for shore, he said OK - now we are going to get on our knees in the sand. The water was about chest deep where we were standing. I went down, and he took my hands and settled me on the sand floor and made me look straight at him all the while. Lo and Behold! I sat there and looked at him.

    That was that. We went for a short underwater swim, a whole 5 minutes.

    The fifth day, Reef Disha: Out on the boat, and the instructor was busy with the rest of group. He suggested that the Divemaster try to get to descend at my own pace while the rest of them did their thing. This worked. She took me down slowly to the bottom (12 meters) and I was FINE, actually quite positively excited. The instructor was already there with the rest of the group. He took my hand and we went for a 40 minute dive around the reef where I saw blowfish, angelfish, a whole swarm of barracudas (about 30 - 40 of them), flutefish....I was hooked!!

    Unfortunately, the course I had paid for was also over. It was ok, though, because I had learned not to CONTROL my panic, but to HAVE no panic. The panic was simply gone.

    The instructor had the next day off, but offered to take me out on a diving boat and go over some things with me. He did this free of charge which totally amazed me. We went down to 12 meters again, and he had me remove my mask, retrieve the reg, and various other stuff, which I instantly did with no panic whatsoever. We ended with an octopus ascent, and he told me that I was now enabled to dive down to 12 meters in the company of a divemaster or instructor.

    So, what started out badly ended well, with me being not only hooked, but also impressed at the extra time the instructor was willing to sacrifice to get me underwater.

    My husband felt that he could have worked more intensely with me from the beginning, but sheesh! There were 12 people in the course (totally overfilled) and the man has only 2 hands. He had to go down with 2 groups of 6 at a time as it was. The fault, if any, was with the travel agency who was more interested in selling an expensive course than one more suited to me, such as Discover Scuba Diving. My vote though goes with the Jasmine Diving Center in Hurghada, for effort and seriousness, as far as I could determine!



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