|So what does someone do the day after going through an earthquake? Well why not go diving! After all when you look around on the surface you see that everything is fine, other than the broken alcohol bottles, so it might not be a bad idea to check to see how things are under water. Not that we know what they were like pre earthquake.
As it was approaching 2 years since Cory and Elaine had last been wrapped up in 14 ml of neoprene in the cold waters of Porteau Cove in Vancouver they signed up for the required refresher course. There are so many dive shops in West End, Roatan, it can be difficult deciding who to go with. Cory and Elaine opted for Pura Vida, a dive shop just down the road from the Mariposa for two reasons. One, it is just down the road from the Mariposa, and two they found out through their couchsurfing connection that the manager/dive instructor, David, is also a couchsurfer and is originally from BC.
The refresher course was good, because they were put in with a discover scuba diver and another girl doing her open water course, and this was going to be the first open water dive. As part of their refresher Cory and Elaine were really going over everything from the beginning, and that can be a real confident booster. It did start coming back to Cory and Elaine all the things they had previously been taught.
The best part for these two was the fact they were able to wear a shorty wetsuit that is only 3.5 ml, no dive booties or gloves. When they went into the chest deep water, and kneeled it was time to practice underwater breathing. There are many rules in scuba diving and two very important ones are keep breathing, and always keep your regulator in your mouth. A lesson that was a bit difficult for Elaine when she was getting her dive certification, so she is still a little bit nervous, which of course makes Cory a bit worried.
During the refresher Elaine was having some difficulties with her mask, nothing major, other than water kept filling her mask. That is not a good thing. Fortunately she was able to get it figured out and in the afternoon when they jumped in the boat to head out to Bikini Bottom they were ready.
Two things they noticed after getting in the 30 feet deep water. The first was the incredible visibility. It was possible to see in all directions, and you knew where the bottom was. What a difference to diving in Vancouver. The second thing they noticed was all the beautiful live coral. Cory and Elaine had really been looking forward to diving here, as the reef is part of the second largest barrier reef in the world.
Once at the bottom the four divers, along with David started off on their fun dive. For close to an hour they swam over the reef, seeing all sorts of amazing things. I only got to hear about it after, but am pretty sure I will get to go on a trip with them soon.
I heard about all kinds of different fishes, and the thing they were most excited about was seeing a huge turtle at about 40 feet under water. It reminded them of the movie Finding Nemo. I could tell how excited they were when they arrived back at Mariposa and it wasn’t just the dive. I noticed a bit of a puff in their chests, and that they were psyched over what they had accomplished.
They are now planning for their next dive. Pura Vida offers three dives a day at 9:00; 11:30; and at 2:30 with options for night dives. Cory and Elaine did a night dive in Vancouver. The early morning dive is the deep dive at the 100-foot level, which they aren’t quite ready to tackle yet. Once they have a few more dives under their belt I am sure they will be ready, and hopefully they will be able to get it to count towards their advanced open water certification.
The next morning, Cory had a bit of an earache, so he will wait for that to get better before going diving, but I think some snorkelling is in order. Steve and Cindy, their neighbours have been doing snorkelling and are absolutely amazed at what they are seeing.