Beautiful things in life come at the most unexpected times. A recent visit to meet one of my close friend, turned out to be more than just chit chatting and catching up.
My friend, Moin, is a scuba diving instructor and has recently moved to Goa. Narrated below is the enchanting tale of the one question that I asked him- “Why Scuba Diving?”
When he was young he visited one of his cousins who owned a scuba diving school. This was the first time he was introduced to the concept of scuba diving. Not only was it interesting, it was also challenging. He remembers having failed in his initial few couple of attempts, and also embarrassed. However that did not break him- he decided to keep working on his skills and ended up choosing Scuba Diving as his profession!
“If I have to describe Scuba Diving the only words that come to my mind are ‘It is like meditation under water!!’” says Moin.
One of the most amazing things that you experience as a scuba diver is that your profession is in no way boring, mundane or like a rut of routine. Even though you are doing the similar physical activity every time you go for a dive, you are experiencing new things every time, making new memories and touching your soul to a new level every single time.
The experience of exploring a new diving site every time, is not only thrilling but also challenging! Since a new place will always have unexpected surprises and at the end of the day, these experiences make up a part of your existence.
There are times when you go diving at the same place multiple times and how every time you see new flora and fauna, different aquatic life, schools of fishes, and sunlight peering through the water.
Moin admits that he is not only fascinated by the experiences, but also by the equipment used for scuba diving. They are different from the everyday equipment you use and needs a thorough understanding before you use it.
The excitement in the eyes of the first time users, trying to understand the use of these equipment and at the same time also experiencing this beautiful feeling of being in a world different from their own, exploring the depths of the water and the mesmerising effects of the life under there.
Though there are instances where the people get paranoid experiencing something so different and so new! The one issue that people face while experiencing scuba diving for the first time is the requirement to breathe from the mouth and not from the nose. Since the human body is accustomed to using their nose for breathing, breathing with the mouth under water is something that may cause difficulty to some people.
The experiences start getting better with the more you go for dives. For some people their best dives are the first ones, for others they get better with every new dive, as you are getting used to the process and hence your mind can concentrate more on the diving and living the aquatic life around you.
Another major factor for making the scuba diving experience beautiful is the visibility under water. The more the visibility, the more beautiful and out of the world is the experience. With less visibility you do not get to see a lot of the aquatic life and hence advisable to go for a dive on days when the visibility is better.
If you don’t know what you are doing, it can be very fragile, it can kill you- you need to know the limits and what and how you do it. It is important to take training from a certified instructor. There are multiple sources for learning scuba diving, but the most trusted one is to take coaching from a certified scuba diving school and a certified scuba diving instructor. This may sound like a cool and happy sport, but it can also get dangerous if not executed properly. Hence the advice to get thorough lessons and also dive along with a certified instructor.
Moin has an incident to narrate for the most beautiful thing that you have heard after taking a student for the first dive:
It is an incident from Andaman where he dived with an old German man, and the site was almost 30-35 meters deep. The visibility was beautiful and the depth was perfect for one of the best dives. When deep in the water, this man raised his hands like he was submersing himself to the beauty and the life around him. At the top all you could see was schools of fishes, variety of aquatic life swiftly flowing through the water. Beneath them was the beautiful aquatic fauna, the vegetation was the best thing that could compliment the surrounding. Once out of the water, the German Man only had one thing to say “This Was Heaven!!”
There are a plethora of beautiful diving sites around the world, some of them listed below. The most beautiful scuba diving site in the world is The Great Barrier Reef, off of the coast of Queensland in north-eastern Australia. The Great Barrier Reef can be seen from outer space and is the world's biggest single structure made by living organisms. This reef structure is composed of and built by billions of tiny organisms, known as coral polyps. It supports a wide diversity of life and was selected as a World Heritage Site in 1981. CNN labelled it one of the seven natural wonders of the world.
Some of the most beautiful Scuba Diving Sites in India are:
Andaman Nicobar Islands: Havelock Islands, Port Blair, Passage Island
Goa: Uma Guva Reef, Shelter Cove, Locker of Davy Jones, The Jetty
Lakshwadweep Islands: Aggati Islands, Bangarram Islands
Pondicherry: Cool Shark Reef, Temple Reef, The Hole, 4 Corners
Karnataka: Netrani Islands
Life is too precious and moments like these are worth cherishing every shilling spent and every breath taken. If Scuba diving has been on your mind for a long time, go ahead take a dive soon.
The beauty of nature can never be enough for a hungry soul!