Archive for October, 2009

Really Crunch Time…

October 7, 2009

Only a couple of weeks left before the big “I do!” Very excited and a little nervous. We’ve been fitting in SCUBA dive certification classes for the honeymoon and I wanted to report that I passed my online course with a 92% (I beat James, ha). After we learned on paper about all of the ways you can die whilst scuba diving, we then learned about the equipment hands-on, and had two pool sessions with an instructor to learn some practical knowledge. There is a lot to learn!

Learning the basics in a pool is a good way to practice skills and gain confidence before going into "open water."

Learning the basics in a pool is a good way to practice skills and gain confidence before going into “open water.”

Some key takeaways for those considering scuba diving:

  • When you have air, you can do anything! I was mainly nervous about the whole scuba diving thing because the thought of being underwater for a prolonged period of time just seems unnatural. But, when you have a regulator providing constant oxygen, it’s pretty freaking cool. I didn’t have to “hold my breath” or be nervous I couldn’t hold it long enough, and I could worry about doing other things, such as looking around and controlling my buoyancy, without even worrying about breathing. I even jumped backwards off the side of a pool with all of my equipment on, and wasn’t nervous at all because I was breathing the entire time. So for someone nervous about water in general, this is a major benefit!
  • Equipment is heavy and that sucks. You have to strap on an air tank AND a weight belt to offset the buoyancy of your wetsuit and everything else. I didn’t enjoy having to do drills like taking off and putting on a 16-lb weight belt while floundering around under water. However, on the upside – I had air!
  • Being bald is a plus in this activity (yay for James). My hair was a big nuisance in this activity, getting caught in my mask and tangled in everything (despite being tied up). I resorted to wearing a swim cap the second session. I figured, I already look pretty dumb in this wetsuit, how much worse could it get?
Watch out!  I'm special.

Watch out! I’m special.

My instructor was pretty proud of me for completing all of my emergency skills and not panicking in the water considering I just learned how to swim and have had a general fear of water for years. I have to say…I am, too! I’m now trying to build up confidence for our next challenge – the open water dives at the Rockaways where the visibility will only be a few feet. If I can survive that, I think I can scuba dive anywhere…