The way i felt today.
An early enough start, check my kit, check my breath, check my newly formed rashes under both arms due to yesterday, yup, i had them all with abundance. Finally take a sea sickness tablet, (you know the one i forgot to take last night before i went to bleeding bed) As i drove along whistling a merry tune, i just couldn’t get the thought out of my head that this could be a lovely day. Another dive or two, some good sights to see and another couple of steps closer to my goal. (Ever been kicked in the balls when your NOT looking?)
The Dive master took our information (I was buddied up with a girl from Cydive called Maria) I think she’s Slovenian, but keeps going on about Italy. It came to pass that all she wanted to do was take photographs. Now thats NOT a bad thing, not a bad thing at all, except that when i enter the water, all the air in my tank seems to penetrate the metal, my wetsuit and my skin and i take the whole lot in by Osmosis in one huge gulp!!! We waited at a five meter position for the other two to descend (now one was a BSAC diver who has been “Diving since 1985” and the other was an idiot. BSAC came off the boat backwards and immediately lost his mask. The idiot came off and promptly lost his tank. We all came down the line to the seabed (25.9 meters) and sorted tank man out. (I must admit, i did laugh a little) my buddy stood and looked on (I should have clicked on at this point how the rest of the dive was going to unfold.)
“Just keep swimming, just keep swimming” (Nikkie, thats your fault) we tracked long a trench, it was a trench, not a wreck or a cliff or an old discarded pushbike. It was a trench. (Descriptive enough?) as we ‘swam along the trench’ the depth started to increase. We eventually got to the turn around point, and turned around (I was expecting that, were you?) checking my pressure gauge as frequently as i should, i wasn’t really worried that the needle was starting to list towards the “You’re NEARLY out of air’ side of itself. I promptly alerted the dive master then looked around for my buddy. As photographer, you should have every right to take photographs, but you also need to see where everyone is and what they are doing!!! The dive master beaconed to us we needed to get closer to him, I practically had to drag Maria away from the molluscs and shit she was playing with. I signed that i was running LOW on air, she acknowledged then continued taking friggin photographs.
My life took on a ‘sliding door’ crossroads then, I was either going to throttle her and drag her corpse to the boat and claim she got ‘done in’ by a livid moray eel, face a legal court hearing, fight my case, probably lose and end up in a cypriot jail for the rest of my natch. OR i was going to gesticulate the fact that her partner (a newly qualified rescue diver no less) was going to end up a rubberised morsel for the fishes if she didn’t get a wiggle on. Well, I’m still alive and so is she. We got to the ascent line and were told to go up as a pair. For some reason i started off like a monkey climbing a rope and went fast. When i looked down i realised that this wasn’t the appropriate way to do this. The dive master looked at me and told me to calm down. (I was calm, i really don’t know why i went up that quick) anyway, at the 5 meter safety stop the current took hold of us like we were flags (literally streaming back like the Union flag on a windy day).
3 minutes done and we ascended t the boat. Now I’m sure on the briefing we were told that because of the current, a line would be tied to the descent line so we could clamber to the back of the boat for an easy exit. Oh i was wrong, and Mick had great pleasure in telling me.(It was being bollocked on exercise by a ssgt when you were a private) I laughed. Back on the boat and my stomach decided it wanted more room. It wasn’t sick actually that came out, more like (you know the film Abyss, when the guy uses that liquid to breathe and when he gets into the craft and remove his mask it all comes out), it was like that. (So much for the tablets) I had some fresh water and fruit and was fine. Maria on the other hand lay on the deck and may have well of cried. That cheered me up NO end i can tell you. Cydive hadn’t booked me in for another dive so i made my excuses and left (Im still feeling as though I’m floating now) so another dive or two tomorrow and we are back on schedule.
To all my friends (wherever you are and whatever you are doing) X