Open Water Diver Certification: CHECK.

May 25, 2013

Officially certified as an Open Water Diver (PADI)… a huge accomplishment for me, considering this was on my bucket list for a long time.

I signed up for scuba classes in March as an eager beaver since I knew I wanted to have the chance to dive The Great Barrier Reef once I embarked on my travels. This course ended up being about three weeks: three pool sessions (two of which were on work nights from 6-10pm), two extremely long three-hour classroom sessions (complete with exams… haven’t taken exams since 2011, HA), two open water dives in Laguna Beach (Shaw’s Cove) and three dives in Catalina (which resulted in 10+ hours of seasickness*).

*Sidenote: Always, always, always take Bonine (seasick medication) the night before AND the morning of a boat trip, even if you think you WON’T get seasick. I wish someone told me this earlier… I felt like living death for the duration of our Catalina trip. If this is a taste of what morning sickness is like, I most definitely will never, ever, ever have a kid when I get older. NO THANKS.

I wasn’t able to convince any friends to get certified with me, but I wanted to do this for myself– regardless if I was inevitably the youngest and only girl in the pool and beach dives. It took me awhile to get used to the regulator and had to consistently push myself just to get through all the skills in each module, but everything was worth it. Seeing Garibaldi, a bat ray, shark, sheepshead, sea cucumbers, sea stars, etc. up close was a phenomenal experience… as was getting tangled in kelp. Ah, the memories.

And yes, I did have quite an embarrassing story on my free dive in Catalina, but I guess that’s what makes it memorable… I’ll never look at Eel Cove the same way ever again.

Look out, NZ and Australia. I’m ready to explore the depths of the ocean (okay, up to 30 ft.) down under…

Screen shot 2013-05-27 at 9.49.21 PM

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