09 March 2012

Samira and Oliva Make their First Open Water Dive

We got to the beach at almost high tide, which meant we had to fin up to get across the trench to the sand bar.  Laila, Samira and I went first.  I pulled Samira and the flag.  
 We had some trouble, but we did get out.  I left Laila and Samira beyond the breakers while I went back to get Olivia. 
 I got to the beach and pulled off my fins, when a wave pushed me face first into the sand.  The next wave moved me further onto the beach.  I crawled out the rest of the way.  Olivia was laughing.   
We got into deeper water quickly.  She finned up and we swam out to Laila and Samira, then continued out to the reef.  We got ready to descend, but Samira was nausous.  It did not pass quickly, so she and Laila went back to the beach. 
 Olivia and I descended into 3 ft visibility and continued East onto the reef, where the visibility  opened up to about 8 ft.  I thought we might be South of the Big Coral Knoll, so we headed North, but never found the Knoll or any familiar landmarks. 
 We ascended to regroup, then redescended to make our way back to the beach.
We swam SW with the current and saw a number of fish. 
 A French Angelfish, which was one of three that swam by us. We also saw an Orange Spotted Filefish. 
We had to get close to the beach before we could touch bottom and take off our fins.  I balanced on one leg and dug a small foothold in the step, then waited for the right wave, but I could not get my legs under me and splattered on the beach.  My fins escaped and I had to slip back into deeper water to retrieve them. 
Olivia went to her knees, but was much more controlled.   She got out intact.  I put myself together and tried again with almost identical results. 
Third times the charm, so they say, but I managed only to hold my fins as I splatted on the beach and crawled on my belly out of the surf zone.  We got a group picture once I got myself together.

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