So this week was the week that Tenerife burned, or at least it felt like it. Devil winds blowing in from the Sahara have almost reduced living in the Golf Del Sur into one constant dash from shade, to fan, to air conditioning and back. Hitting us in the latter part of this week, the rumours, of course so often false, were true. I should have guessed by the grim demeanour and resigned tone of my local bar proprietor. The only certainty seems to be that it could be worse, coming from another ‘local’ sipping on a mango smoothie this really does not hold much comfort for an active Divemaster intern.
However I digress from the weekly update. This is actually an important time as I approach my halfway point. Four of the more experienced interns are leaving in the next few days and I shall be sad to see them leave. Their support and help in the past four weeks have been completely invaluable. So to Malena, Theiss, Mel and Gerardo… Adieu and safe journey home!
Again this feels like a digression, so onto life as an intern. This week has really enforced a key message from the Rescue Diver Course, to STOP->THINK->ACT. Essentially during a dive and in the preparation I made a mistake that was really silly, that of going for a moderately deep dive with a half full cylinder. Due to this there were a couple of other effects that meant a fellow intern had to stop a dive early and ascend with me. Even now, some days hence, a consistent mental face palm has been in effect.
The annoying thing is that this has overshadowed, at least to an extent, some really positive leaps forward. I gave my first dive briefing (to a customer, Jens, no less), not perfect but still a ‘first’. My pool skills have been improving, surprising myself at how they seem to be coming together. Two other aspects, the Pre-Dive Safety Check and Discover Scuba Diving Kit Assembly, are also coming on well despite my attempts at improvisation. Which occur despite it being specified on a card.
Now…. To the diving. The main highlight this week was a pair of dives at one of our less frequented dive sites, Las Eras. This dive, including a long time customer Marvin, alongside a sheer wall through Tenerife’s underwater volcanic landscape was excellent. Streaked Gurnards, Groupers, Triggerfish, Barracuda, Octopus…. I hope, Dear Reader, you get the point. Part of it was also a drift dive, but mainly it just seemed a different kind of diving compared to what I have experienced so far in Tenerife.
I was also able to observe the Confined elements of the PADI Rescue Diver course for two of our interns. I desperately wanted to be playing the part of an unresponsive diver underwater, as this is Hide-and-Seek with diving equipment. Indeed, it sounds very amusing.
On a final note, a personal observation: On Saturday evening, to celebrate the ‘graduation’ of our interns, Dive and Sea hit Playa Las Americas for hijinks and frivolities. Now for those who do not know, like myself prior to Saturday, this is a fascinating cultural experience. Even now I still have no idea how to describe it accurately, apart from (this being the closest approximation I can manage) a hedonistic Middle Eastern souk with an impressive amount of novelty sunglasses.