There is an uncanny appeal to the marine life that has fascinated me ever since i can recall. The kaleidoscope of colors that a sea life has to offer is mysteriously serene and calming. I was (and am still) that person who would stop by wherever i find an aquarium to gaze fixedly at those little creatures and marvel at God’s creation. Given my ever-present inquisitiveness towards the magical life down there, it was quite natural for me to want to go ‘Scuba Diving’. What surprised me more was that i ended up doing it with a two-year old on board, which by the way would constitute my favorite most story to tell her from her tiny tot days.
My last couple of vacations did not allow me to fulfil this fantasy for one reason or another. And the last thing i had ever imagined was that I’d end up doing it with my baby around. See, whoever said life ends after becoming a mom, was telling A BIG FAT LIE, as the possibilities are endless.
Phuket is one of the top sites for Scuba Diving, so during my recent visit, it was pretty obvious that now i should go for pursuing my passion of Scuba Diving. I chose the best reviewed diving company from Trip Advisor, called Super Divers Phuket. (I am a freak when it comes to finalizing my trip partners, to the extent that i go through hundreds of reviews before finalizing my plan). Everything looked great except for the dilemma as to who will take care of my girl when i leave for a full day at the diving boat? Her dad could, but then he will have to miss the once-in-a-lifetime experience. Babies were not allowed on the Diving Boat for safety and comfort concerns, and since you stay on the boat from early morning till late evening,, there seemed to be no good option.
BUT we were pretty determined! I knew a couple of things in my heart. A. Going alone won’t be as much fun, you do need a companion to share the fun details. B. It will be mean to husb. C. My girl will go sooper ecstatic in the boat and sea. She’s a rock star when it comes to trying out new, adventurous things.
SO, i successfully managed to convince the company to let three of us be together on the boat and that we would manage by taking turns for diving and staying with the girl.
Dive Sites for Scuba:
Our dive sites were Ko Racha Yai and Koh Racha Noi, which happen to be among the best diving sites in Thailand. Visibility is great and goes to 20 meters and the depth can go from 10 to 40 meters. The water is clear and blue. There is a wide variety of Fish and Reef life at these sites and if you are lucky,you can have an encounter with Manta Rays, Whale sharks, Barracudas, Turtles, Octopus etc.
Few Facts about your Scuba Adventure:
1. SCUBA stands for Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus
2. You do NOT need to be a ‘Swimmer’ to Scuba dive first time (Discover Scuba program), however for more advanced courses you need ‘basic’ swimming know-how.
3. You have a whole set of apparatus/ gear that helps you stay comfortably fine down there. This includes your wet suit, a high quality eye mask that helps you see, an air tank and a regulator to provide oxygen under water and help you breathe, BCD (Buoyancy Control Device), a weight system, fins to help you swim, a gauge to detect the air pressure. A bit of a physics involved which is why you need to be trained and certified to scuba dive. If you are interested you can read in detail about these here.
5.Three most important things to remember are that you should ‘remain calm’, ‘breathe continuously from your mouth’ and ‘equalize the pressure built up in your ears by blowing air from your blocked nose as you down’
6. There is a professional organization to train and certify Scuba Divers/ Masters/ professionals. It’s called PADI which stands for Professional Association of Diving Instructors. Learn more about them on their website
7. Unlike popular assumption, aquatic life is NOT dangerous. You don’t harm them, they don’t harm you. Simple formula. So please don’t touch or capture. Avoid acting like a boss in their house and just be a spectator, relax and enjoy.
8. Sharks are NOT to be feared as they DO NOT eat humans, instead poor things should fear humans. While sharks attacks account for only about 5-10 deaths an year (that too mostly out of misunderstanding or self-defense) humans kill more than 100 million sharks each year 🙁
9. Once in the boat, your dive master will give you a briefing on Scuba Diving basics like your gear and safety, how you breathe etc. You will also get a detailed booklet that you can read. I would suggest doing your homework before joining any new activity but frankly i believe most of the important things i learned were when i was right there on the boat and a few later on.
10. Make sure that you are well-fed and hydrated. You will be breathing very differently from your mouth which will require a lots of energy and before you know it your throat starts feeling dry and you find yourself consciously making an effort to breathe. It’s such a remarkable experience that you don’t want to mess it up by being tired.
11. Make sure you are in a perfect physical health. If you have sea or motion sickness, your dive master will have some pills to ease you out of it.
12. You are advised NOT TO travel by aeroplane for at least 18 hours after 2-3 dives, so please plan your flights accordingly.
Ok so now that you know my story and some basic facts about Scuba Diving, are you guys ready to take a plunge with me??? LET’S GO! 😉
Oh, let’s take a quick look at what’s the little one is doing back in the boat while mama has a fishy-date! 😉
OK Folks, That was NOT just it. I have some more MIND-BLOWING stuff to show you, so scroll down and have fun! 😀
LAST BUT NOT THE LEAST, Here comes thus GIANT PUFFER FISH, which is about 120 cm which is more than half my size! 😀
Back to the Boat after saying Bye to the Sea World! In case you are wondering which eye liner lasts even after some 1-2 hours under water, ladies, it’s MAC Liquid Last Eyeliner, it’s so long-lasting that it can stay up to 24 hours as per my experience. And it’s waterproof. That has been TRIED & TESTED ha ha! 😀
Guys, let me introduce you to this cool guy who was our amazzzing and sooper helpful Dive Master. He ensured we stayed safe and comfortable through out and managed to take these amazing pictures you just saw too. A big shout out to Phillipe Walche! You can find him at Super Divers, if you ever need to.
If you are planning a vacation anytime soon, SCUBA is one thing that i recommend you to have on your ‘to do list’.
The total cost for the whole activity in Phuket was about $150 per person (inclusive of pictures)
That’s it for my Scuba Story!! Let me know what you thought of our little adventure and if you would like to do it or not!! Also next time somebody tells you your life is over as a Mom, look them straight in the eyes and tell them to just watch you prove it wrong!! As for your kids, trust me, you are raising them seeing their HERO! \m/