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: 🇦🇺