Em was kind enough to let me go out alone on my SCUBA trip. We had talked of going to one of the pontoons and taking turns, me SCUBA, her snorkle, me SCUBA, her...
But the day before she decided she'd lounge and browse around Cairns. (Speaking of browsers...did you know the Internet browser "Firefox" is named after a real animal--the firefox or Red Panda?!? It is now my favorite animal!!!!)
We did one dive at Milln Reef, Fish Town site and then went to Flynn Reef and dove at Gordon’s Mooring and Tracy's. The first dive was a little tough as I had a large underwater camera with me. I hadn't been diving since 2004 but everything came back to me right away, including the difficulty keeping a neutral buoyancy. To do this you have to put in the right amount of air into your buoyancy control device or BC. I kept putting too much in and then taking too much out, plus the deeper you go the more the air compresses giving you less buoyancy. This wasted too much air and cut my first dive a little short. This combined with one hand trying to not let go of the expensive camera I hired (rented) gave me some added awkwardness.
*Insert: It is not easy taking underwater photos. The fish don't tend to hold still, even the lumbering sea turtles drift away at a pace making it hard to photograph. Then when you do have a subject that doesn't leave, like Nemo, he darts around and as I try to take the picture I begin to either sink or rise (remember the buoyancy problem). As if that isn't hard enough, I was constantly trying not to land on, bump into, or disturb the fragile coral.
On to the dives:
Kinda sad. It was still amazing though. The first dive's highlight was the blue spotted sting ray. I saw a white and black stick and wondered what it was.
The second dive started off great with an immediate sighting of a green sea turtle. Then we found Nemo, or at least his one stripped cousin. (I did see the real Nemo variety while snorkeling on Tuesday).
This dive went much better for me, I was much more graceful with my camera and buoyancy and extended my dive by 4 minutes.
Here are some of my other favorite pictures:
It was a great day of diving!