|SCUBA Diving in Belize, Part 1||1 | 2|
SAN PEDRO, BELIZE — SCUBA: that's self-contained underwater breathing aparatus, for everyone that doesn't watch old Jacgues Cousteau or Jeaporady.
Keith and I have been working on our SCUBA open water diving certification for the last few days in San Pedro, Belize. We found great dive insturctors, Grumpy and Happy. Our instructors are ex-pat Canadien husband and wife, down here fulfililng a dream. Lorne and Jolene moved down to Belixe 3 years ago with their teenage children. They have survived the real Hurricane Keith and will hopefully survive being a part of Erin and Keith's world adventure.
We have completed all of our course work and passed the final exam with flying colors — 100%'s for both of us!. (Ed.: Technically, Erin checked the wrong box on one of them, but Jolene gave it to her anyway, cause she knew the answer. I'm not about to let her forget that. :-) But, enough of the boring but life saving academics. Let's get to the diving.
Lorne spent a day in the pool with us teaching us how to breath correctly, recover a lost mask, regulator and my personal favorite — how to take off and put back on your weight belt. This seems like it should be a simple task, but when it's one of the only things weighing (hence the name) you down enough so you don't eject to the surface, taking it off and then reattaching it posed quite a problem for me. After Lorne and Keith stopped laughing hysterically (while still breathing underwater no less!), I managed to end my backflips and get the weight belt back on me.
After all day fun in the pool and a slightly sunburned nose, we were exhausted but exicited about our first open water dives the next day. The weather wasn't perfect but it was nice enough to head out to Hol Chan Marine Park for our first taste of salt water!
Hol Chan is a protected marine park. No fishing or removal of anything from the park. The fish are even smart enough to stick around within the limits of the park. The big groupers and other fish come up to the boats as soon as you cut your engine, looking, of course, for the sardine-wielding divers.