How I WON the Best Dive Job in the world 2010 (Part 2 of 3) A reflection of my time with Blue Season Bali. Guest Post by Kenzo Kiren
A new beginning
When looking back on my time in Bali, still to this day, I am overtaken with emotion. The anticipation and buildup was so incredibly exciting and, not for one moment during my stay, was this ever anticlimactic.
From day one, I was absorbed into the Blue Season Bali family with open arms. Of course my circumstances were special, but BSB was really a place that, the moment you arrived, you became part of the team and everyone contributed to make the experience special. I arrived with only an open water certification and 20 dives. I was a baby in the diving world but as soon as my training began, I quickly moved up the ladder, enhancing my diving abilities, feeding off the wealth of information the BSB instructors had to offer. I started with my advanced course, EFR and rescue and as my collection of PADI certification cards grew, my love for diving exploded along with it.
Marine Diversity, diving in Paradise!
The variation of diving in Bali is so vast, no matter what excursion you set off to each morning, you knew it would be another amazing day under the sea. Whether it was out to Tulamben’s world famous USAT liberty wreck, Amed, Padang Bai, out west to Menjangen or over to the island of Nusa Penida in search of Mola Mola and manta rays, you really could not go wrong.
To this day, whenever people ask me where the best place I have ever dove, my answer is always Bali. It’s a place where, on every dive, you can see forms of life you’ve never seen before and at the end of each and every dive, you have enough content to create a fish ID booklet. Up until the very last dive of my 7 month stay, I was still discovering things I’d never seen before. I will admit however, a large portion of those discoveries came from the incredible underwater eyes of the Indonesian guides. People often tell me I have a great eye at finding things underwater and I’ve always attributed that to watching and learning from the expert guides I dove within Bali.
Taking on the PADI GoPRO Challenge heads on!
As my time and training progressed, things just kept getting better and better. My experience underwater grew exponentially and I eventually started with my divemaster course,taking on a more professional role in the PADI system. I took part in my DM training alongside Priscilla Ong, fellow BDJ winner as well as a group of individuals from all over the world, who shared a similar passion for travel and, of course, diving. During the following months we did all kinds of training workshops, mapping projects, beach clean ups and conservation projects, taking customers on guided dives all over the island and many, many pool skill circuits, becoming expert demonstrators. The DM program in its entirety was extremely rewarding because we were all able to grow at our own pace in our individual styles while, in the meantime, also forming a special bond. Although we were far from home, we all shared the feeling that we were a part of a new little family in our current home away from home. We spent our days training side by side, eating dinners together at the night market and exploring the island on our days off. I am still in contact with many of them to this day and there has been some epic reunions along the way!
Overall, the program, direction and guidance I received from our divemaster instructor was undoubtably an instrumental part of my growth, which has made my work as a professional interesting, rewarding and constantly improving ever since. The growing process of the program was catered to each individual based on their time frame, but collectively, we all came out with the utmost confidence and professionalism. The divemaster course was nothing short of fantastic and one I recommend to all. Sometimes I wish I could go back and do it all over again!
PADI IDC Training with Blue Season Bali
Finally, I was ready to move on to what I set out and came here to do. Become a PADI dive instructor! I joined alongside six other motivated individuals for the December Instructor Development Course. Up to that point BSB had a prefect 100% success rate on the year. No pressure. I will admit I was a little nervous but from day one of that first orientation our world class IDC team of platinum and gold status course directors set us clear with our objectives and guided us on the path we needed to achieve them.
The days were jam packed full of theory, pool and ocean workshops but the structure and feedback we received made the learning process not only attainable but extremely enjoyable as well. For me, the verbal presentations and underwater instruction came more naturally but the theory was something I had to put extra emphasis on.
Their is a very slim margin of pass or fail during the Instructor exam theory and standards exams so I spent long hours after days at the centre to make sure my knowledge of theory was on point. As a group and individually, every day we grew and ultimately we built the necessary blocks so that when we set off for our instructor exams we were full of optimism and confidence.
The PADI Instructor Exams… It’s Easy
After some final last words of advice from our course directors and IDC staff we entered a room full of potential future instructors to write our theory and standards exams. You could feel the tension in the classroom. Thankfully, we all passed and a temporary sigh of relief set in as we looked onwards to day two. The following day was knowledge development presentations and pool skill presentations. We were well prepared and passed with flying colours. Finally, we arrived at graduation day for the ocean presentations and demonstration of rescue exercise 7.
As I performed that final rescue breath the confirmation set in that I had finally done it.I was now a PADI instructor! Moments later it was made official when all us IDC candidates received our papers with smiles from ear to ear, jumping for joy.
Becoming a Dive Instructor
The feeling of achievement was overwhelming. Living up to everything I had worked so hard for and accomplishing the goal that so many people believed I could achieve was an incredibly fulfilling feeling.
That night over a ‘couple’ celebratory drinks the realization was starting to set in that from this moment onwards my life would never be the same! I was now a certified PADI instructor and the next chapter of my journey in Bali could begin.
I was ready to teach!
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Missed the Previous Posts in this Series?
- The competition is open from August 1, 2014 to October 31, 2014.
- We will announce the 8 winning candidates on November 20, 2014.
- Candidates will need to be able to travel to Bali in May 2015 for a minimum of 2 months for their Divemaster training, and to compete for the selection of the Best Dive Job in the World Grand Prize winner. Please make sure that you’ll be available to travel to Bali from May 23, 2015 to July 20, 2015 before you submit your entry.
- For a complete list of prizes, check out http://contest.bestdivejob.com/prizes
Don’t miss the next article from Kenzo
How I won the Best Dive Job in the world 2010 (Part 3) How the Best Dive Job in the world change my life forever