I went diving a couple of times yesterday, but didn’t dive the afternoon, evening, or this morning. I did dive the mid-morning dive, with a different BCD. It made a huge difference. After the second dive yesterday I started taking antibiotics, and I feel so much better now. I was feeling quite run down, sore throat, congested…so I’m glad I just rested and didn’t go back in for 24 hours. Now I am ready to go. Of course, now that I am ready to go, the boat engine broke down and we just sat for a couple of hours. I’m glad they were able to fix it. Not sure how many more dives we’ll get today.
It is beautiful here, but the diving is less than great. The visibility is poor to fair, and we’ve seen nothing major to report, except for the sea snake. I am glad Ally passed on the diving, she would have hated it. Lots of current, surge, and low visibility. If you are seeing large pelagics, as in the Revillagigadoes in Mexico, it would be fine, but when there isn’t much to see except coral (which is gorgeous) it isn’t much fun. You know how desperate I am for animals when I take several photos of sea cucumbers! Of course, these sea cucumbers are really something!
At this point, I would not come back and dive Mergui. Yes, it is beautiful here, but the dive conditions have just not been very good. It may be illegal, but there is dynamite fishing going on here, and you can see the “rubbish” and “rubble” it brings up from the bottom. Longtail fishing boats everywhere! I saw two small blue spotted rays today…very small, and very fast, and if you think there are lots of sharks in the ocean, you would be dead wrong. The water is nutrient rich here, huge numbers of small fishes, unbelievable numbers of schools of silversides and glassy sweepers and chevron barracuda, but the question is: where are the predators and the pelagics? Nary a one. No turtles, dolphins, sharks, mantas, only the two small rays…hoping for better diving over the next couple of days. I’d be happy with a triggerfish or two. I do love the tree coral and the feather stars! They are fascinating.
530p Just returned from 3rd dive which totally sucked. Current, up current, down current, side current, too much current, I say. The visibility was the worst yet. I’m looking forward to Ally coming to Phuket and being with her. The dive trip has been really disap. I am the “weakling”, the first one up on every dive. Many, many people rented larger tanks…to hold more air. I never thought to do it because I’ve never really needed to. I don’t think I’ve ever been diving with a larger tank, but I could use one on this trip. There are people who come up right behind me, and they all have larger tanks, so I shouldn’t feel too badly about it, but I am self-conscious. The weight I gained over the last several months is very uncomfortable, but I can feel my clothes fitting more loosely…I’m not eating much on the boat. The food is good…but spicy. Lots of rice and veggies for me.
I’ve enjoyed my dive buddies, the “boys”. Most are couples, or in the group from Spain, so I’m hanging with Chris, the American wild and crazy guy, the Finn twins, and Mauro, from Italy but living in Finland. It’s a small world, right?