Open Water Certified – Dahab

Soooo…….scuba diving, at first thought that sounds awesome so with our long weekend I signed up for an “intensive” five day course. With this set up I would be able to go through the entire course in just five days and would be open water certified to scuba dive. This sounded much better to me than doing it over a few weekends. The course took place in Dahab which is an awesome relaxed beach town. We took the class through Adventure Spot which was located in the hotel HappyLand at we stayed at.
My room for the week – just the essentials – bed, bathroom, AC, and a fridge.

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Bathroom – no shower curtain that’s how we roll over here, water gets everywhere but it’s okay because it dries up pretty quickly with the heat and all 😉

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Hotel balconies

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Right outside our hotel was a wonderful boardwalk along the Red Sea coast along with a bunch of cool tourist shops and places to eat. The only down side to Dahab was that with all of the unrest going on in Egypt tourism is way down and has hit Dahab very hard. It was really sad to see all of the restaurants and shops hit hard and how bad they wanted our business. We came with a big group from school so it was nice that we brought them business for the five days we were there.

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On to the scuba diving – this was the hardest funnest thing I’ve done in a long time 😉 The first time breathing under water is a bit frightening as well as a bit awesome at the same time. Each day we learned new skills and then practiced them underwater.
Setting up our gear

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Here are a few things we worked on and remember this is all underwater:
– Removing your regulator (what you breathe out of from the air tank) and putting it back in
– Breathing off of your buddy’s regulator in case something was wrong with your own or you run out of air
– Clearing the water out of your mask
– Removing your mask and putting it back on
– Transfer from the snorkel on the surface to use the regulator
There were many other skills we learned that are required for diving as well as in emergency situations. Obviously the number one priority is safety which is why you should always have a dive buddy and know how to handle all emergency situations. The hardest part for me was taking off my mask and putting it back on underwater. As soon as I took off my mask I wanted to breathe through my nose which in turn makes me swallow water and then I think I’m drowning and it all goes downhill from there. You have to understand that I’m the kid who plugged her nose to go under that water until I was about 12 so all of those reactions came back. This was my biggest obstacle to get over and I used a lot of positive self-talk too. My positive self-talk along with the help of my instructor, who was amazing, as well as the dive masters who were helping I learned some new tips to clear my mask of water as well as take off and put my mask back on underwater. Good news is that I did it and I can do if needed. So after completing all of our skills and doing a few open water dives we were officially done and now certified to scuba dive. All in all I’m glad I did everything at one time and I’m looking forward to going on more fun dives to become a better diver.
Here is our “class picture” along with our instructors and one dive master – the other one is taking the picture 😉

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Later skaters
– Brandy

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