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Published: October 12th 2010
I am now an instructor! The 3 days of exams were very nerve racking. I think this was due to the fact that the various sections were really split up so there was a lot of time waiting in between and also I couldn’t help but pick up on everyone else’s nerves. I guess being at uni and doing a lot of exams means that you become used to them but in this room everyone was very quiet. I was the first to finish my written exam and as I walked up to hand the test in, I could see people looking up at me very surprised and even the examiner asked me 3 times if I was sure I was ready to hand it in. Nonetheless we found out quickly that all the English speakers on my IDC had passed which is really good. The Iranian guy didn’t pass as he failed the written exam and that was largely due to the bad translation which is a shame.
I haven’t had time to work as an instructor yet because PADI take their time to check that you have meet all the necessary requirements and the fact that they haven’t taken the money out of my account yet suggests that I won’t be getting my teaching status before I leave. So instead I have been doing a bit of guiding and then I went on a mini adventure to see a bit more of Bali. I have really enjoyed the guiding as I feel much more confident with it now; I even guided people at one of the dive sites with the strongest currents and it was enjoyable. I like being the one in charge because if you don’t think something is right then you can just turn around. This dive site I am on about is simple, minus the current, as you just swim out as far as you like and then just turn back to finish where you started. I decided to turn around after 12 minutes because I could see divers who were ahead of us and I could see that there bubbles were rising and then taking a spirally route up, eventually reaching the surface - definitely a sign to head back. I think there is a lot of satisfaction in seeing someone enjoy a dive.
I have spent the last 3 days exploring Bali on a moped. I brought a map with my friend, Liss, and we have been randomly picking places to drive to and then see the sights. Our first day involved a trip to Ubud which I have been to twice already but it was entertaining to try and find our way there. Somehow we didn’t get lost even if it involved asking people for directions at the traffic lights. The second day of the adventure involved heading south to the beautiful beaches. I love the driving down in the south of Bali because there can be some good roads and it’s very hilly. I can imagine it being fun to drive your sports day around if the roads were consistently good. It must have been funny to see me slowly trying to get up one particular hill as it was very rough, very steep and also a sharp turn. We ended up going to three different beaches and meet quite a section of people from Indonesian men who want you to join in their summersaults to masses of people participating in a Hindi ceremony. Our final day was spent on Kuta beach which is very popular with a lot of Australian tourists were we had surfing lessons. Unfortunately Liss got hit on the head with the board after being thrown in at the deep end so it wasn’t as enjoyable to learn by myself after she sat out. So we ended up using the kiddies bodyboards instead and had a good time anyway. I made myself laugh when I was swimming about and was thinking that it felt really odd that I wasn’t swimming very well and then I realised it was because I didn’t have fins on. My legs felt useless in the water without fins on. Almost felt as if I had to learn to swim again!
I’ve got to start thinking about packing with is going to be quite a mission because I was over the weight limit on the way out and I struggled to do the zip up on my bag and that was before all the PADI textbooks I now have. I have joked about wearing the majority of clothes but I think I will put lots of clothes in a second hand luggage bag and if they say I’m not allowed it, then I will just put them on! We will see what happens. Packing has got me thinking about the biggest down side of working as a dive instructor. Meeting a lot of people who are doing the same thing means that everyone is coming and going so you constantly have to say goodbye to friends. I have experienced this with people who have already left but I think there are some people who you know will be especially hard to say goodbye to and I’m not looking forward to that. Hopefully it will result in some good holidays visiting people on the other side of the world though.
I wonder if anyone will see a change in me, other than my tan that is, when I’m back home. I think being submerged in a different culture and meeting a wide section of different people makes you do a lot of thinking. I believe it puts a lot of things in perceptive and I am very grateful for the life I live. I often find myself thinking how lucky I am to have had the best of lots of different worlds. This adventure is coming to an end but it is just the start of another one.
Dad also told me that I had to tell people that I was still coming home and joining the RAF as I had given the impression that I wasn’t coming home from my last message - so I am!!
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