The Daily – 1/27

Word of the Day: Catch Up

Notable / Highlight of the Day: Nearly all of my time had been focused on my rescue course, so having a day off was a blessing.  I didn’t realize how sore I was from lugging all that gear, towing fake dead people through rough seas, and jumping in and out of the water.
I don’t have much exciting news to report.  I read at a cafe in the morning, bumped into some familiar faces, ate more than I should, replaced my broken purse, studied for my upcoming test, and generally chilled out.
I took a few photos around the close-in area, and am embarrassed to share I haven’t actually explored the whole island yet, but likely that is due to all the rain we’ve been getting.
Current Location: Gili T, Indonesia
Mood Emoji:☕️

The Daily – 1/26

Word of the Day: ‘Stralia Day

Notable / Highlight of the Day: after getting a really solid night of sleep, maybe 12-14 hours, I worked on my assignment which was to create an emergency management plan should someone have a dive accident. Since I was the checklist queen, this was right up my alley, unlike saving drowning victims.
I wrapped it up and took a quick shower but realized I had lost track of time and was now running late. Mike made sure to thank me for the cappuccino I picked up and highlighted my tardiness.
We started by reading the tides and working out search patterns and using the compass on land before entering the ocean. I then set up and broke down my equipment multiple times under time pressure. I had grabbed a BCD that was the wrong size, which had been intentionally left in the wrong spot to make sure I’m checking what’s important. I’ve cut my gear set up from 15ish minutes to about 2 1/2 already, but it can still be more streamlined and I’m learning better best practices like to check the air first in case it’s a bad tank.
We then went on a dive at deep turbo and started out first just exploring and then working on search patterns. We saw a ton on turtles and sting rays and found (the hard way) a whole bunch of blue bottle jellyfish tentacles. We also saw a nudi that moved like a tiny spanish dancer to swim (you tube link to a spanish dancer – http://youtu.be/jQbXnqRtiTg) but was navy with yellow spots and wasn’t as frilly.
When we completed the U search pattern but as we started the expanding square I finally checked my air and realized I was at 50 bar and we needed to stop the dive and ascend to the surface. (Don’t worry, you start with 200 bar, typically head to your safety stop around 60, so I wasn’t in danger).
We grabbed lunch and met a couple of local drivers and took a break from studying/lessons. On the way back we grabbed ice creams and started talking a little bit about the next section until we got back where we set up at a table upstairs to go through the section more thoroughly.
We then headed out on our 2nd dive to Halik Reef which was blissfully free of jellyfish tentacles and full of more turtles and even a couple sharks. We then worked on an expanding square in surge and worked on raising an unconscious diver. We then practiced rescue-breaths in some fairly choppy water and removing the BCD of an unconscious diver.
Once we got on board everyone started falling overboard and I had to perform a number of rescues without the panicked divers drowning me. I succeeded by messed up by not delegating enough – story of my life.
We got back and I booked it to the bathroom because I didn’t want to pee on my rescue victims. And then we reviewed the dos and don’t of what I did over bintang.
It was Australia Day, and as Gili was an Assie hot spot, the island was in full celebration mode. It was also Julie’s last night and Mike needed to move so we decided that I’d go out with the team and postpone the end of the rescue course for one day. I was also secretly happy to have an extra day to review the course content before my final exam.
Mike and I first headed down to Blue Marlin to clean out his locker and for me to buy Bruno’s postcard. I met a few folks there including JT a kid who was just finishing up his Open Water course.
Mike and I hung out for a bit and ate but I needed to head down to meet up with Julie and steve at Lava. As I was trying to go, I bumped into Josie and her parents and chatted with them for about 20 minutes before excusing myself to head down to Lava as the rain started to pick up. I popped into Sama-Sama and saw the Big Bubble crew, but no steve and Julie, so quickly ducked out after one song.
Once I made it to Lava we hung out for a bit. Julie spotted a solo female traveler and went over to chat with her so she wouldn’t be lonely. Steve joined and clearly found her attractive, so I left my books at the bar and Julie and I bounced down the street in torrential rain back to Blue Marlin to find a bit more of a scene. I introduced Julie to my young friend JT and I met Rachel, a bubbly American Tech diver from Colorado who lives in Australia. I was excited to chat with her for a while but she was ready to go and so was Julie who wanted a livelier scene (and as did I).
We pushed off to collect Steve at Lava then back went back to Sama-Sama for some dancing. Savannah and a couple other familiar faces were still there to dance the the night away.
Sama Sama closes at midnight, but Sandbar stays open until I don’t know when because I left around 2am and the party was still surging. I bumped into Josie and Mike on the way home and chatted with them for a bit. It turns out, I may have been the only one to drink conservatively that night, sweet Josie licked my face to say goodbye :).
Current Location: Gili T, Indonesia
Mood Emoji: 🇦🇺

The Daily 1/25

Word of the Day: Not-so-fun dive

Notable / Highlight of the Day: Normally a dive that isn’t to learn a skill is called a fun dive.  This dive was anything but.  It was like hanging out with the most annoying, over-active kid who knows how to push all your buttons.
At every turn, Mike was losing his fins or mask or making uncontrolled ascents. At one point he had taken his BCD off during an air assist and I actually forgot he was a qualified instructor and was fighting him underwater for a minute.  It was actually a good dive though, it was a good example of many of the stupid things that can go wrong underwater.
Between our morning dive and our afternoon dive we reviewed my homework and ate lunch again at the Roast House and got ready for our afternoon dive.  By this point, I had set up and broken down my equipment as practice what felt like a million times and was getting better and faster at assembling everything.
The afternoon dive was first just checking out Sunset Point but went into underwater assist skills, search patterns, and surface skills like breathing for an unconscious victim and towing to a boat.  I was so tired after dragging Mike around the surface for 20 minutes that I couldn’t actually jump into the boat myself.
I had my ususal beers with Edwin and Mike and then grabbed a quick bite while trying and failing to avoid the downpour.  Like I said, I’m not sure if it’ll ever stop raining.
Current Location: Gili T
Mood Emoji: 😐

The Daily – 1/24

Word of the Day: Free Dive

Notable / Highlight of the Day: I had managed to actually sell two girls on diving last night, and because of that I was allowed to go back to Shark Point when they went out.  Mike was on photo duty and I patiently waited for them to descend until I got distracted by a clump of something that I thought was a scorpio fish (it wasn’t) and crashed right into these brand new divers.
Besides Robin managing to not kill me, it was a fairly easy dive with tons and tons of turtles (I actually lost count there were so many).  There was a bit of surge and the visibility was not good, but it was nice being in the water and not having dumb stuff happen.
Mike and I went back to the shop afterward and Bruno swung by to say goodbye before he hopped on the ferry.  After our goodbyes, Mike and I made our way to Roast House for lunch and then headed back to the shop to practice skills in the pool including assisted ascents, how to stop a diver from ascending in the water, and a few other things.
At the end of the day we split a few Bintangs with Edwin at Lava while they discussed possibly trying to wooo Mike to go work full-time at Uber.
As I had stayed up so late and gotten up so early to work on homework I called it a night and simply stopped at the crepe stand to grab a ham and cheese crepe for dinner before finishing my homework for the night and falling asleep nice and early.
Current Location: Gili T, Indonesia
Dollars Spent Today:
Mood Emoji:

The Daily – 1/23

Word of the Day: Emergency First Response

Notable / Highlight of the Day: One thing I never thought I’d be doing while taveling was learning how to give chest compressions.  But that’s how I spent my day, working on my emergency first response skills. I’m also beginning to believe I may never see sunsine again it’s been raining so much.
I did some coursework, watched a very 90’s video on emergency response, made out with Ana the training dummy while learning how to give rescue breaths and giving chest compressions, and other fun first aid stuff.  I also, for the first time in a week, didn’t see Bruno all day.
I hung out with Mike and Edwin at Lava Bar when the day was finished and finally around 8 pm met up with Savannah and Bruno at Skallywags for ribs that were delicious and generously portioned.
As it was actually officially Bruno’s last night, I had to spend some quality time with him after dinner. The three of us stopped at Blue Marlin and then made our way back to Lava bar which was full of Uber Scuba people…and Mike was still there.
We hung out for a while, but once the shots started pouring it was time for me to head back and work on my first homework assignment.  It ended up being a later night than I had anticipated, but I’m so glad I got an extra day with Bruno.
Current Location: Gili T, Indonesia
Mood Emoji:🤕

The Daily – 1/22

Word of the Day: Shark Bait

Notable / Highlight of the Day: Just kidding, we woke up and went on a morning dive to shark point with Savannah and the Big Bubble team.  Bruno and I were a buddy team and adventured around the site for a little more than an hour.  I came up with 30 bar….whoops.

We saw four sharks, some pretty corals, a shipwreck, and probably five sea turtles. And lots and lots and lots of fish.  Everyone was feeling good, very little alcohol had been consumed the night before, and the weather was holding out for the most part.

When we got back, Bruno and I discussed our game plan which was to swing by the ferry office to bok his return back to Bali,  take hot showers.  Bruno also had a few things to do in the afternoon so I went to grab a bite for lunch and relax for a bit.  But he decided he wanted to spend one extra day in Gili!!!

On the way to my place to pick up his stuff we bumped into Mike who was going to be my rescue-diver instructor and chatted with him for a bit about island life.  He’s a crazy Kiwi who’s been on Gili for 10+ years.

Bruno and I parted ways for a bit, but met up again at Big Bubble about an hour or two later to hang out and to wish both Andrea and Tyson goodbye.  We were at the shop chatting, playing games, and listening to Savannah practice her ukelele skills while the rain fell steadily onto the tarp over our heads.

Once they were ready to close, we headed over to La Favela for dinner and then Broken Compass for drinks.  It was mostly locals, but there was one over-enthusiastic Hawaiian who was eager to share why he was the most interesting person there (as you can guess, he hasn’t).

Everyone started doing Joss shots, so I decided to call it a night before it got too messy.

Current Location: Gili T, Indonesia
Mood Emoji: 🦈🐢

The Daily – 1/21

Word of the Day: Movies

Notable / Highlight of the Day: I woke up feeling like a champ, but I knew Bruno would very likely be hurting. I went to Banyan Tree and texted Bruno while I was on my way, but was not expecting him to be vertical just yet.
I had a relaxed start drinking my cappuccino, reading, catching up on my blog, and eating a very yummy avocado/hummus/poached egg/sautéed mushroom toast. And then the rain really started. As I was finishing Bruno awoke from the dead and said he was hurting badly. He had very little memory of the night before and wanted to know where I had escaped to that night. He wasn’t sure if he was sober yet – I’m pretty sure I knew exactly how he felt.
Once the rain calmed down a bit I headed to get coffees, pastries, tylenol, tums, and Pocari Sweat (SE Asia’s terribly named version of Gatorade) and headed over to Savannah’s place to resuscitate Bruno.  After he got some coffee, food, and aspirin in him we headed over to Big Bubble to visit Savannah and everyone else.
We hung out for a bit, but she was having some open water students come through, and Bruno needed to make reservations at Scallywags for his group dinner, so we headed down the main street, passing lots of horse-drawn carriages and wet tourists.  The power kept turning off and on all day too.
Sadly, because of the expected rain they wouldn’t take our reservation because they only have limited room for seatings inside.  So, the plan shifted from moster racks of ribs to Regina Pizza where we headed next to make sure space was set aside for us.
Bruno, if I haven’t already mentioned, is a celebrity on the island.  Everyone seems to know him as he’s worked on the island for six years,  We literally cannot walk down the street here for more than five minutes without someone calling out to him.  It’s kind of fun though, I’m meeting a ton of people here.
We decided between the weather and the hangover, today was a perfect day for sitting in bed and watching movies.  We were both still a bit tired and for some reason, my hotel room had a DVD player and tv.  There was also a copy of Jack Reacher II ready to watch, so I took Bruno on a tour of DC and whatever the other city was where they had filmed the movie.
We both thought we were going to fall asleep, but neither of us did, so Bruno headed back to Savannah’s to take a nap before dinner.  I hung out reading as it was rainy and gross and eventually fell asleep as well.
But I was up just in time to get caught in the rain on my way to Regina Pizza.  It was raining so hard you couldn’t even see the road in front of you. It was one of those times where I’ve thought to myself, holy crap, I’ve never seen rain this hard, and then it starts raining harder.
Bruno and I were the first to arrive, but the others all straggled in when the worst of the weather passed.  I sat next to Terecea, a brilliant tech diver, and across from Josie, a happy and bubbly Aussie diver instructor.
We had all the pizza, which was really quite tasty, and didn’t come with a side of food poisoning, so even better.  But the weather was terrible and everyone was hurting a bit, so we called it a night after our very tasty meal.
Current Location: Gili T, Indonesia
Mood Emoji: 🍕