Scuba Diving in Koh Phi Phi
I haven’t been scuba diving in 10 years. Sure, its crossed my mind, but you would be surprised how little of a draw it is for me in my day to day life in San Diego. This being despite the fact that the dive culture is quite strong here in my home town. The water is cold and murky, and the rentl prices are steep. Those are the excuses that led a person spending a decade and a third of their life not scuba diving despite having an advanced level certification.
Well, part of the reason is that I didn’t really have a dive partner either.
The draw in Thailand was really high. Southern Thailand was warm, the water was clear, and I could see fish even when swimming in shallow water. The dive prices were right, and there was the added beauty of diving off of a traditional longboat.
We dove in Koh Phi Phi.
I was thinking I could stroll up there with my decade old certification and no card and be allowed to dive, but they stopped me pretty fast. For a little bit more money we were allowed to go on a exploration dive which had more attention from the dive master. I think it was worth it despite not being able to use my certification. The good stuff to see isn’t very deep. We never exceeded 20 meters the whole dive.
The first site had a man made concrete structure for coral to grow on. I didn’t eat the best (American style) breakfast that morning and we ate it quite late so I was getting queasy. Choppy waters in a small boat also didn’t help. I kept getting disoriented. That was a queer feeling for me because In my memory hitting the water cleared up sea sickness expediently, so being queasy while diving was a new experience.
I did pretty well on the first dive. We got through the skills test without too much trouble. I didn’t freak out and mess up my buoyancy at all. We saw some massive fish hiding amongst the blocks. Overall it was a success.
Lunch was Paneng curry that we selected before the trip. It was such a good lunch but I couldn’t eat it. I stuck to the bananas. I can’t believe I thought curry would be the best lunch option when I knew without a shadow of a doubt that I would be sea sick on the dive boat. I felt better once I evacuated my stomach in plain view in front of everyone over the side of the boat. There were three girls on the boat with us that were getting their open water certification and weren’t having a fabulous time. They thought the experience was too painful. I think it helped them to see that I could puke over the side of the boat and keep diving. I think one of those girls even continued to complete the course that day. I am going to go ahead and take credit for that.
The second dive had rolling hills of fish and corral. There were even tunnels to swim through. That was my favorite dive. There was some advanced level diving to do and we were able to do it without destroying the coral. I got away with only a single gash in my left leg to match the laceration I got on my right leg climbing in Joshua tree a few months ago.
After the dive we got our dive paperwork and went home. I felt the most exhausted. I forgot how exhausted scuba diving makes you feel. I couldn’t lift my arms. I couldn’t keep my eyes open. It was only like 7 o clock and I felt like my body dragged.
I love that feeling.
Its starting to make me think that I should take a refresher course and get back into it. San Diego gives me the opportunity to keep the certification current and if I manage to do a dive every six months or so I could go on a dive on vacation every year. And something about that sounds right.