21 Jul 2010

Welcome to Planet Ogg!

Oh o, are you lot in trouble!! Apparently my blog can be about anything at all, not just diving at Diveaway Fiji, so welcome to the ramblings of a slightly narked diving instructor!!! As ever, it has been a while, not as long as last time, although it appears I did start writing this on the 2nd of June...

It's been a busy start to July as it was winter holidays for the schools in Oz and NZ, so Hideaway pool has been a real assault course for pool lessons – kids can't half kick hard! Lots of people have been completing their Open Water courses whilst they stayed at Hideaway and Outrigger, so congratulations to you all! I hope Aude and Gwen can forgive me for my appalling French accent. Luckily for Andi, his girlfriend Asarela could translate the bits in German that we couldn't figure out between us. Now, if I had needed to ask any of them where the nearest train station was, or tell them I have a sister called Janice, it would have been a different matter!

Quite a few of our recent certs went on to do some more diving around Fiji, so I hope you guys had a great time! Scott completed his Junior Open Water, then headed up to Taveuni with his family – His final dive on Stingray was a lot of fun, we found so much cool stuff to look at, we did an hours dive and didn't even get half way along the reef! It was all the small brown things that were captivating us, along with some amusing octopus antics. Bridget and Ben had another eight days in Fiji after they completed their course, with lots more diving planned. Bridget is nearly a marine biologist, so thoroughly enjoyed all the nudibranchs and other invertebrates we found – Christmas Tree worms rule! And Ben, you can keep telling us that the tank opens the same way as a tap and we will still look blank and have to stop and think about it, these things just don't make sense!

None of us were as good at spotting critters as Tom, another of our Junior Open Water students. Him and his Divemaster mum Suze spend a lot of their time at an Island off Oz called Lady Elliot, and he is well versed in all the small things, including finding pop corn shrimp and nudibranchs all over the place! The anemone fish were still his favourites, so our Nemo's site was a winner. You can see all three types of nemo fish that can be found in Fiji all in a few square meters of anemone encrusted rocks – the Pink, the Tomato and Fiji's own variation on the Clark's anemone fish. Some even share the same anemone, which is highly unusual. Thanks to Suze for her impersonation of Diveaway staff – you had most people fooled!

I've been more out the water than in the last week as I have been poorly, so Alex has had to get wet. He reckons the vis on Stingray is clearing up again after the big swells, so I can't wait to get back in the water. Might even just go out diving with Te, Tuks and Esala, just to see some more of our dive sites – Chimney sounds particularly interesting, even need a torch...

I have a rescue course starting on Friday with ChiChi. She has been in Fiji for a few weeks doing an archaeological dig at the Sigatoka sand dunes with her friend Jenn, who also completed her Open Water course. Apparently one of the dig leaders does look a little like Indiana Jones, so it might be worth a little visit... No whip tho, just the hat. I am hoping to get Mere to complete her course at the same time... she is either ill, or just takes random days off whenever I mention it! Maybe we will have to send her down to Mango Bay to do the course with Damos – bet she's not ill then!!!

I was excited to get a letter from the lovely people at Fiji immigration the other day, allowing me to stay and continue working in the country for a good long time. At least it means I will be here for when my family come out from the UK to visit, wouldn't have been the most popular sister/ daughter otherwise!!! Am compiling my list of things required from home – can't get past good chocolate and pesto... and a can opener that works!


Cragrat said...

Will pack tin opener and hope to get it passed airport security.
Looking forward to some more diving in warm water!