Saturday, May 23, 2009
Diving support group.
On Utila you either dived or you dived. All conversations revolved around what spots you’d been too or how many dives or what course were you doing – especially since we were staying at a dive school. That was fine when we were part of that clique but now that I wasn’t, I wanted to get as far away from it as possible. But I still wanted to overcome my newfound fear.
Feeling motivated and looking for a clean slate, I took Cindi and Donna’s advice to not give up and began looking at dive schools in other parts of the Caribbean – Panama, Nicaragua and even Colombia. They all looked like possibilities. But I also realized that I was here in the student diving mecca with over 20 other schools to choose from. Why did I need to wait? The sooner I conquered this fear the better.
So after breakfast, I headed down to the Utila Dive Centre with Adrian there for moral support. I met Rob, a kinda loud crazy English guy with an equally loud and crazy laugh. I told him that I’d had a panic attack during my mask off skill but had completed all my other skills and was determined to finish off the course. He was immediately up for the challenge and said that he’d make sure I got my certification. Yay! Enthusiasm just what I needed since I wasn’t sure just how determined my heart actually was.
When I asked him about a new place to stay (fresh school, fresh lodging and a fresh attitude), he walked us over to Rubi’s. A small hotel on the sea far away from the bugs of Cross Creek. The walk gave us a chance to get to chat and get to know each other which put me at ease. And Rubi’s was just as great. A bright spacious room, our own bathroom and a great view (photo above). We checked in and rushed back to Cross Creek to check out and get all our stuff. Immediately I felt like a new person.
Back at Rubi’s Rob stopped by to let me know that he’d talked to the head guy at the school and they had decided to give me Anna as an instructor.
“Don’t worry. She’s my girlfriend and she’s a much better instructor than me. And she’s a mask expert. She’s the best.”
He’d recommended a great little place to stay (in fact his sister was staying in the next room) so I trusted his glowing review of Anna even though he may have been a bit biased. And he told me that Anna and I were going to start an hour earlier so I could spend some extra time in the shallow water just off their dock. Cool. I felt so much better that I actually got jealous when Adrian went out that afternoon to do his two free fun dives. If only I had transferred to UDC earlier. I could have been out there with him.