So the intention of this week was to dive and complete my PADI advanced, alas I have chosen not to continue. Yesterday I had two good dives, saw so much at Mystery Reef and also Golden Nuggets. I encountered pipefish, trigger fish, angel fish, in fact a whole array of fish. I met my first sea cucumber and watched how the coral protected itself by pretending to die when it was touched. The dives where good, my issues are more about what I expected and what I received.
Having had the importance of safety and planning drummed into me on my open water certification and the ad for this trip saying dive at the Jean-Michael Cousteau dive centre to arrive finding that the Jean-Michael Cousteau resort itself is closed for renovations and that myself and Mr Revthreads where the only divers, the dive shop was off limited for surface intervals, no detailed pre-dive brief was offered and throughout the dive not once was we asked what our air situation was like or whether we were on our way back etc, I decided that the concern this caused me was not worth it. I have felt a little like it is a quick, get em through, over and done with. no workshops to work through our PADI book or sitting with the divemaster or other divers, just take your book home and do the four required chapters, all of which I have to say I have done. The divemaster was obviously very experienced and we did see loads of marine life, I had a moment and he was very calming, but everything else surrounding it basically took over, yes I know I think too much!
The offer through Daku Resort sounds great, but knowing that the Jean-Michael Cousteau place is closed during February, every year, and that the diving package to me seems rushed (we had completed our first 2 dives by noon and was back at the resort) just seems to take away the enjoyment and challenges of the whole PADI experience that I have previously had. After previously blogging about naming challenges etc, I am happy to name mine as, I haven’t dived for 10 months up to yesterday, pre-dive briefings to me are very important as a person not overly confident in the water, I like to know where we are going, and to know that once air reaches a certain point that we are heading back for the safety stop (I realize that rule of thumb is 100 bar head back, but none of this was discussed or made clear) this is more of a “be aware” than a complaint. Mr Revthreads has headed of to finish his PADI, he’s a much more confident person in the water than me, so for him it’s worked, that’s why I say it’s more of a be aware than a complaint.
I have had two great dives, that now I have made my decision not to continue I can enjoy the memory of them and all I saw. Daku resort is peaceful and tranquil, JJ the owner is very pleasant and all I can say about the staff here is absolutely top quality peopIe. I may continue with PADI when I get home or maybe somewhere else in the world, I would definitely dive again in Fiji, the waters are beautiful, but I would prefer to be part of a group, after all one of the things that I love about diving is the whole diving community.