Instructor’s Day Off

What the heck do dive instructors do on their days off? Well, most of the MDDC instructors often…go DIVING!

Today Charlie and I were lucky enough to discover weboth had theday off and we decided to spend our morning together underwater. We grabbed a couple of scooters (after all, I AM the Scooter Queen!) and went out to play.

If you know me, you know I absolutely LOVE to teach. Some people get tired of doing introductory dives and of “dealing with newbies” – their words, not mine. I have to say that after all these years, I am not tired of that stuff at all. I always say my three favorite things to do are Intro Dives, Scooter Dives, and Night Dives (the order varies every time I say that). Did I mention that I totally LOVE it?

When you get to take someone on their first ever anything (dive, night dive, scooter dive, salt water dive), how can you not get a rush from that? Living in Maui, we often meet people fresh out of their certification courses and many of them may have been certified in fresh water or in low visibility conditions. I feel so lucky and so honored when I realize that I am going to get to show these divers (or future divers) our underwater world for the first time!

That said, everything can’t be all about work. It is soooo relaxing toget in the water with a good dive buddy and just…go! As instructors, we are always looking over our shoulders and are often swimming backwards to keep track of everyone. I know I am always doing a mental count, “one, two, three, four, one, two…..ah, there are divers three and four”. We are monitoring air, bottom time distance from our intended exit, comfort level and buoyancy of our divers, preventing problems, AND we are constantly on the lookout for cool stuff to show people.

Going out on a pure pleasure dive, especially with a fellow instructor, relieves you of much of the “work” of diving. With Charlie as a dive buddy, I know we can communicate with a glance or an abbreviated hand signal. I know we have the same air consumption, and I know we will both know what to do if one of us gets a wild hair and zooms away to look at something (for those of you wondering, we will look for each other for one minute and then reunite at the surface. Yes, just like the manual says!). I know we will both be monitoring air, no deco time, and we will both be looking for cool things to show each other! I always find the really cool stuff, but at least Charlie tries.

As a matter of fact, when you’ve got a good dive buddy, instructor or not, that’s part of the enjoyment of the dive – everything just feels eeeeeeaaasy!

Aloha, Rachel

p.s. As we explored together, Charlie humored be by climbing into this cage (without much cajoling at all!) and we also looked at the remains of many old jeeps – can you make out the steering columns in the photo?