03 October 2005

Diving Part 1

Today we finally got started on our diving course.

We had already gone through most of a diving course with SSI in the UK, but never got round to finishing as it would have meant diving in the chilly murk of Peterborough Reservoir, or finding a - rare - SSI school in France. So when we came here we thought it'd be a great way to spend a hot summer, getting wet and cooling down in the waters of the Gulf.

Al Boom Diving School is one of the many places offering diving training the PADI way. They are based on Al Wasl Rd where they have a shop and a training pool for learners. To start with we did some theory, most of which was a refresher for us, and then we got to put on our kit to learn how to be safe underwater. The most dangerous thing that can happen when diving is to run out of air, so a lot of the training is concerned with teaching what to do if you have air problems. We learned how to drop our weights and ascend safely, how to share air with our diving buddy (you always dive with a partner who makes sure your kit is ok and helps out in case of problems) and what to do if you dislodge your mask or regulator (the breathing apparatus).

There is a lot to learn to start with so we were glad that we had already done most of it before. Next we will dive in real open water in Dubai, and then to qualify we have to take a theoretical test and take a final dive in Fujeirah next weekend.

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