This morning was the first time that all the divers, newly certified and certified before arriving here, got to dive together. I must admit, it’s been lonely down there without everyone. The DITs (divers in training) barely had any free time to spend in the water this previous week while juggling their intense daily training schedule and drills. Now that they are all happily certified open water divers, we got to celebrate with a full group dive/snorkel trip this morning at the Rio Bueno site. The ride out to the site was beautiful and peaceful as we glided over the glass- like waters that early morning brings. We passed green rolling hills and lavish shore houses as we motored to the site on the boat, “Seahorse” with our captain Scarlet. I’ve been a certified diver for a little over three years but I don’t think getting to the bottom of a dive site and taking that first look around will ever get old. The visibility had to be over 100 feet and the combination of coral structures and schools of countless fish almost took my breath away. I say almost because it is definitely not safe to stop breathing while at depth. My dive partner Suzie and I trailed our group and took pictures of anything we found to be interesting. Today is the last day that we can add photos to our identification projects, so everyone is making sure their collection is unique and well put together. Will, Horia, and Frankie were in our dive group today as well and, with some pointers from Joe Warren, attempted to spearfish for lionfish – to no avail. However, it was cool to see them learning and handling the weaponry. I hope to see them get a lionfish on another dive soon because I know it will absolutely make their trip. It was such a pleasure to finally be able to dive with Suzie DiGioia. She is a prime example of why this trip is more than just a class – it’s a gift and an experience. To be able to bond so closely with such remarkable people on this trip makes it worth every dollar I spent to get here. I love everybody here for who they are but I just figured I’d give a shout out to my buddie Suzie for, as always, sharing so much laughter and light with me today on our dive. Even under water we were cracking up.
-Peace, Sunscreen and Neoprene