Crunch Time

14 Jan

Hey everyone,

Judging from everyone else’s blog posts, I’m going to be the last one to leave. My flight leaves from Indianapolis on Feb 1st, so I still have a few weeks left before I have to begin packing. A word of advice for anyone in the future planning on scuba diving while abroad, don’t wait until the last month or two to get certified! I will be studying abroad in South Caicos at a research center located right on the coast, and I assumed that the center would be able to complete my final open water dives in order to obtain my PADI certification. I found out (a bit too late) that this wasn’t the case, but I went ahead anyways and signed up for a course in mid December out of the Diver’s Supply Shop in Indy. As of now, I have completed all the course work and my first two open water dives. The dives were not pleasant. Don’t get me wrong, I have had a blast learning how to dive so far, but I stubbornly thought that I could complete my open water dives in Indiana despite the frigid temperatures, and nearly cost myself some fingers and toes as a result. I went out with my instructor a couple of days before Christmas to a quarry near Shelbyville, where the water was 40 degrees! I got through both of them (barely), but by the time I was done, I could barely get out of my wetsuit because I couldn’t feel my fingers and my feet felt like they…well, it felt like I didn’t have any feet.

In order to complete a PADI certification, a student must complete four open water dives, so I still had two left. I have been attempting for the past several weeks to set up an appointment down in Alabama with an instructor, but due to weather it hasn’t worked out yet. I am scheduled to head down there this Saturday, and so far the weather looks like it will hold out this time. I have already bought all of the equipment for diving, so it would be disappointing if I wasn’t able to get certified before I have to head out. Hopefully, this weekend will work out. Fingers crossed.

Some quick facts about myself: I am a senior in the college of liberal arts, majoring in professional writing with a minor in history and environmental sciences. The farthest abroad I have been is five minutes over the border into Canada, so a trip to the Turks and Caicos Islands for three months will be pretty exciting.  I’ll post again several days before I’m due to leave.

Until then,

Joe  

P.S. May the force be with you!

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