D is for Diving!

ImageWe’ll start with S.C.U.B.A. diving!  When I was in Bosnia, I got this idea in my head that I would take S.C.U.B.A. lessons.  There was a dive school in Mostar and they did trips and lessons on the Adriatic Coast. I did my lessons in Ston, Croatia, and did a couple of dives down to some old sunken ships before I got my certification with the Croatian Diving Federation.  I highly doubt that anyone in North America or Central America would recognize it, however, it turns out, physically, diving is just not for me.

I did a few more dives in various locations, but always had trouble clearing my ears. I used to get horrendous ear infections when I was a child, so bad that I would be writhing in pain and my ears would leak. One day I was diving some wrecks in Kingston, Ontario and I was having a really hard time clearing my ears.  After the dive, my ears were really bothering me and not too long later, they were bleeding. I have just come to terms with the fact that my ears just won’t allow me to dive.  The fact that I have trouble on fast ascents and descents in an airplane just reconfirms that! So now, I snorkel. Which doesn’t start with D.

My friend, Victoria, of Girl Gone Good with a really awesome and fancy website, by the way, was who introduced me to the other kind of diving. Skydiving! It was 2002, and although I really had no idea what I was in for, I took classes at Mile High Parachuting, and was finally all ready to do my first jump.  I’m not sure how many schools do this, when I went, Mile High would drop you out of the plane at something like 3,500 feet with a motorola strapped to your chest. Once the chute opened, a guide would be standing on the ground and tell you which way to turn and go in order to get back to the jump site. It was pretty cool, floating in the air all by yourself.  At first I was nervous, they told me to turn left and I’d gingerly turn left, they told me to turn right and I would weakly pull on the handle!  As soon as I landed, I had experienced all I needed. I ran back to manifest, forked out another $30 and waited to get on the plane again!  The second time heading down I was a lot more aggressive and confident.  “Turn right” WOOOSH!  “Okay, great, now I need you to turn left” SWOOSH!!  My landing?  A little ballet step on the grass and I was down.  So much fun!  Unfortunately, I was broke and leaving the country for another adventure and that was the end of my skydiving experience. $30 a jump when you’re doing something that much fun can be a drain on the pocketbook! I always wanted to do some more, but never got the opportunity.

What do you think?  S.C.U.B.A. or skydiving?  Or both?

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One thought on “D is for Diving!

  1. For me, neither, as both have resulted in search and recovery operations that I had the unfortunate experience of being involved in. Of the two, perhaps diving is safer as you can always pop your BC and get back to the surface if you’re really disorientated and don’t know up from down. A stint in a hyperbaric chamber is always better than a starring role at a funeral, no? I would, however, do the SCUBA thing to take underwater images in a pool, if someone wanted to pay me a heck of a lot of money.

    Skydiving – you’re at the mercy of your own stupidity and the technical skills of the person that packed your parachute, and while there is a reserve if needed, I suspect I might be too busy screaming to use it in time, if at all. I’d do a tandem jump with a member of the Skyhawks, but once, and only once thank you. It would be one heck of a photo shoot, but I feel safer sitting on the ramp of a herc or a Cormorant at 3000 feet at 130 knots, while securely tethered to the aircraft.

    Snorkeling – yup, that’s it for me, as long as the water is clean and warm and not full of bitey and stingy things, a maze of rock and coral that want’s to shred me, and I don’t get swept out to sea. On second thought, I think I will just stick to surfing, in a group, with qualified instructors and a safety boat near by.

    if I was younger I might be more brave, but at this point in my life, rappelling and zip lines are my fear inducing/controlled risk activities – as is calling an RSM Chiefy…

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