Sunday 17th July – Welcome To Blue Season Bali
The flight to paradise was a smooth and quick one that it seemed almost too surreal to finally set foot on Bali. There were so many pick-ups at the arrival hall but it was not difficult to spot the placard that spells my name along with the Blue Season Bali logo. On my way to the dive centre, I went through all the materials in the orientation package that includes a Bali survival guide, a map, a dive logbook, all the useful information I will need, and a thoughtful welcome letter drafted by Tom West. Now tell me, who wouldn’t be thrilled upon reading this.
So I arrived at Blue Season Bali and finally get to meet the two important persons behind the show (Jonathan Cross and Tom West) as well as the rest of the crew. There had been so much communication going on in the virtual world that finally meeting them in person didn’t feel like a first time. Spent about an hour going through my induction and learning about the most amazing role I’ve ever faced.
Lovely Widhya then took some time off her work to escort me to my home for the next 3 months, Hotel Puri Yuma; which is approximately 15 mins walk from the dive centre. It is equipped with hot shower facilities, air-condition, free WIFI and a huge queen-size bed for trampoline or wrestling activities. Double thumbs up!
New home for the next 3 months.
The barbeque dinner back at Blue Season Bali blew me away with the warm welcome received. It’s like a big family and I feel so privileged to become a part of this team. Not to mention the food, beers, games, beers, happy people and more beers. Alright, cheers.
Welcome BBQ at BSB.
Monday 18th July – First dive, first Mola Mola.
That’s right! No prize for guessing the first task on my list – scuba diving! Had a really fantastic fun dive at Nusa Penida with instructor Justin, and 3 other interns Emma, Kenny and Elle at Crystal Bay, where we spotted the ever famous Mola Mola. It was a first for most of us, so we got overly excited that we lost our buoyancy control and started bouncing up and down underwater and crashing into one another. A very amusing sight to other divers I would presume.
The corals were amazingly spectacular and vibrant in colours it was so unbelievable. I wish I could show you exactly how beautiful the blooming underwater garden is through pictures or videos but really, nothing beats experiencing it all by yourself. The water may not be the warmest you can find but if that is what it takes to invite the Molas and Mantas out to play, I would brave it all.
Tuesday 19th July – Hi Priscilla, you have a visitor!
My closest friend appeared out of the blue at Blue Season Bali early morning and sprung me a huge surprise to go diving together. It totally caught me off guard and there was a taste of overwhelming sweetness flowing in the air.
Off we went, to Tulamben, where the gorgeous Liberty Wreck sits firmly on the seabed. It was a 2-hour bus ride from Sanur, filled with intermittent naps and scenic window panes flashing through. Both dives we caught sight of a sea turtle; paddling its way through the water and nibbling on dead corals. FREAKING ADORABLE! We were also very intrigued by the school of jacks performing the swirling stunt.
The day ended with a couple of drinks at Potato Head (what a cute name isn’t it), this stunning Beach Club in Seminyak, where the infinity pool lures you in and you get the best sunset views.
Wednesday 20th July – Emergency First Response
This was a day of watching videos and making out with unresponsive dummies (performing CPR) to equip ourselves with Emergency First Response skills. While most people would find this course boring, I had a great time playing a nasty victim by throwing in unscripted scenarios for fellow intern Prakash that instructor Justin conveniently labeled me the “drama queen”.
CPR on unresponsive infant.
The Project AWARE speciality course gave us a better insight on how to conserve and care for our environment. Basically, be more AWARE.
The amount of rubbish we collected underwater and on the beach.
The crew decided to have a spontaneous night dive and I was totally up for it (everyday is full of surprises and excitement). Found so many starfish and lionfish, lying and sleeping around.
Thursday 21st July – Rescue Diver Course Part 1
It was day 4 and diving hasn’t stopped since, except that this time, it’s in the pool. Bye salt water, hello chlorine! Videos and knowledge reviews were covered during the first half of the day, and then putting the theories into some inwater practice. One thing I love about our pool is that sometimes you see snorkels sticking out of the water accompanied by fits of laughter traveling through the tube of air space, you know something must be going on down there.
Time to translate those lessons covered in classroom and skills developed during pool session into practice in a simulated real case scenario. Yes, Rescue Diver Course in open water. Despite really strong currents and harsh water conditions, Prakash and I have effectively rescued both Ketut and Emma in times of needs. Hooray, no casualties! Therefore, I’m quite proud to say I’m officially a Rescue Diver.
Now none of us would expect to see any cool creature during a training dive. A bright red nudibranch called the “Spanish dancer” was floating around elegantly, swaying from side to side, as we gathered and watched the undulating motion in amazement. We were mesmerized for a good few minutes before it hit us that we had got skills practice to carry out.
Blue Season Bali threw a farewell barbeque for Emma who had completed her Divemaster course. Didn’t know they have the tradition of drinking beer through a snorkel too! What amazing and fun loving people we have here.
Poor Emma got dunked into the pool.
Saturday 23rd July – SEA Girls and Buoy Boys
Guiding workshop at Tulamben, both at the wreck dive site and the coral garden dive site with instructor Mandy, and 2 other interns Nate and Prakash. There were so many shrimps and pretty nudibranches. Came across a camouflaged blue spotted stingray and a lionfish too. Awesome blossom!
Elle and Mariza decided we are the SEA girls because we are Southeast Asians and we love the SEA.
Sunday 24th July – P a r t y
Training dives today where we focused on Peak Performance Buoyancy and navigation underwater. Learnt how to perform the U-pattern and expanding square for search and recovery as well as how to operate a lift bag.
It’s off day for most of us on Mondays which spells p a r t y. Had a couple of cheap beers at this rustic Angel’s Bar before heading out to Sky Garden in Kuta. The nightlife in Kuta is simply astounding.
This is it! My first week in Bali has been nothing short of spectacular. I can’t believe I have done so much in just a few days. Each day is filled with surprises and is an adventure in itself. If the next 11 weeks continue at this speed, I’ll never be able to keep up with writing. I have so much to share about the life here in Blue Season Bali. Compare to these experts of the sea, I’m still relatively inexperienced in this scuba world with merely 23 logged dives, but everyone here is so passionate about what they’re doing and so generous about sharing their wonderful scuba experiences it really makes you feel so warm in the heart. I’m on my way to becoming a Divemaster, but what’s more important than that really, is meeting all these incredible people and building fond memories together.
Love all of you who made this possible.
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