Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Instructor training for the PADI Emergency Oxygen Provider course on Gili Air

Instructor training for the PADI Emergency Oxygen Provider course on Gili Air

Yesterday we completed the instructor training for the PADI Emergency Oxygen Provider course on Gili Air.

Kathleen, myself, Greg and Wayne outside of Oceans 5 on Gili Air

It was just three out of the four that participated, Anna sat out during the Instructor Specialty training, during which we also conducted the Digital Underwater Photography and Nitrox Instructor courses.

Looking forward to be back on Gili Air come September and November.

Camille

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Turtle Conservation Project Gili Air in Indonesia with Oceans 5

Turtle Conservation Project Gili Air in Indonesia with Oceans 5

About two weeks, one of the boat captains on Gili Air, found 90 baby green turtles for sale at a Lombok market. he bought them all and in two buckets transferred them back to the Oceans 5 dive center on Gili Air.

A bit overwhelmed by the 'present', Sander and Simone, owners of the dive center decided to adapt the baby green turtles and look after them.

Feeding time, complete and utter chaos in da house!

As an intermediate solution it was decided that the turtles would stay in two out of the three dive equipment cleaning basins available.

Happy times in the old equipment cleaning basin

Out of the initial 90 baby green turtle, two passed away, so now there 44 babies in each basin.

The new playground or newer and bigger basin

It was also decided to build a new and bigger basin, which will be able to accommodate them once they grow bigger and some extra basins are build in order to study the results of a 'coral competition experiment'.

The new purposely build basins

With cooperation of Naturalis (Nederlands Centrum voor Biodiversiteit), these projects will take shape in the enar future.

Hats off to Sander and Simone for standing up to the task at hand and taking the opportunity and initiative to make all this happen. I'm proud to be associated with you!

Good luck with all the projects from now on and into the future.

Camille

Monday, August 29, 2011

PADI IDC for August 2011 on Gili Air in Indonesia is done and dusted

PADI IDC for August 2011 on Gili Air in Indonesia is done and dusted

Today we completed the current PADI IDC for August on Gili Air in Indonesia. After plenty of classroom presentations by me and all 4 candidates, confined water and open water presentations, rescue exercises # 7 and exams, it's over, sighs of relief all around!

Wayne, Anna, myself, Kathleen and Greg

Now it's time to stay focused and slam dunk the PADI IE! Good luck to all 4 of you and it was great working with you over the past couple of days!

If you're interested in participating in one of my IDC's, the next PADI IDC that I've got scheduled is an IDC on Koh Phangan starting 2nd September, followed by another IDC on Gili Air starting 21st September and my first IDC in Dauin, Philippines, starting 20th October. Please look here for my current PADI IDC schedule.

Camille

Friday, August 26, 2011

PADI IDC on Gili Air for August 2011 passed the half way mark

PADI IDC on Gili Air for August 2011 passed the half way mark

Today we're well in our way to the second half of the current PADI IDC on Gili Air. Today we completed the first Open Water dive and the 'official' 5 theory exams and we're going strong on confined water and knowledge development presentations, let alone my curriculum presentations.

Wayne flashing money around during a classroom presentation

Look, I'm almost out of air!

Before the Open Water dive today, from left to right Greg, Anna, Wayne and Kathleen

Lift bag skill during Open Water

A few more days still to go and the PADI IE and it's examiner will be knocking on the door, come 31st August and 1st September.

Stay tuned for more updates!

Camille

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Vintage scuba equipment; Suunto SMI and Solution dive computers

Vintage scuba equipment; Suunto SMI and Solution dive computers

From Bone & Beth, of whom I already reported about their vintage Northern Diver 1990 BCD's it now also turned put that they have some pretty vintage dive computer.

Bone is still diving with the Suunto MSI, a model from the early 1980's and probably one of the first series of Suunto dive computers!

Suunto MSI dive computer

Beth was still diving with a Suunto MSI until last year when her model packed in, not bad after serving her so long! When on the lookout for a new computer, she found in the store that she was visiting, a second hand Suunto Solution in mint condition and went for this model at 200,-USD. An excellent deal indeed.

The Suunto MSI and Solution

When I saw Beth's Solution, I realized that back in the days, some 22 or so years ago my first computer was a Solution as well or the model straight after the Solution, since mine was a console model with air integration. I'll have a look back home again and see if I can still find it.

In the meantime, pretty amazing that these 'old skool' computers are still functioning! It will be interesting to see what kind of vintage scuba equipment I will be bale to spot next!

Once more, thanks to Bone and Beth for allowing ,e to take pictures of their equipment!

Camille

Monday, August 22, 2011

PADI IDC for August 2011 on Gili Air in Indonesia is on the road

PADI IDC for August 2011 on Gili Air in Indonesia is on the road

Yesterday the PADI IDC on Gili Air kicked off. All four candidates are in first gear, ready to take on the coming onslaught of presentations in the classroom by me and them and in confined and open water.

The start is always a classic, with the 5 theory exams, from left to right, Kathleen, Anna, Greg and Wayne

We have an interesting mix in the classroom and one of the group is working in Tonga and to be precise, on the island of Eua, how exotic can it get Kathleen? There's Anna on a trip around the world, Greg who's celebrating hos birthday today and Wayne who's an Australian cheese-maker which always goes down well with the Dutch!

Anna during a 5 point ascent in confined water

It's nice to be back on Gili Air again, it's already the third IDC that's happening here this year and it's being put on the IDC world map with a bang!

Greg with a fin pivot

Kathleen during a CESA or controlled emergency swimming ascent

Rescue exercise # 7 with Wayne and Kathleen in the driving seat

Stay tuned for more updates on this IDC!
If you're interested in participating in one of my IDC's, the next PADI IDC that I've got scheduled is an IDC on Koh Phangan starting 2nd September, followed by another IDC on Gili Air starting 21st September and my first IDC in Dauin, Philippines, starting 20th October. Please look here for my current PADI IDC schedule.

Camille

More vintage scuba equipment

More vintage scuba equipment

This time around a BCD dating back to 1990, again some vintage scuba. According to the owners, who are participating in Sail Indonesia 2011 and are currently anchored in front of Gili Air in Indonesia. it's a Northern Diver BCD made out of hypalon which is almost indestructible, back in the days they got at a special deal in the UK for their gear. Apparently Scubapro threatened to sue them since the BCD looked similar to a Scubapro design from that time area and as a result this design was on the market for only a brief period of time.

The BCD's are in perfect working condition and on the left of the BCD you can see where originally a pony bottle was located.

It's always good and interesting to see some vintage scuba equipment in working condition. The owners of this BCD said that they have a friend who owns a Kawasaki demand valve regulator in working condition that's 45 years old with an upstream valve! It must be a challenge to find spare parts nowadays. Now that's something very interesting and I would love to have a look at that one!

In the meantime, I hope you enjoyed this entry and thanks to Bone & Beth, safe travels!

Camille

Friday, August 19, 2011

Project AWARE Fundraiser certificate

Project AWARE Fundraiser certificate

Earlier this week I received a Project AWARE Fundraiser certificate, handed out by PADI Examiners Rob Scammell and George Wegmann for my fundraiser during the Phuket Lagoon half marathon.

Rob Scammell and myself

The Project AWARE certificate, stating that I raised 725,-AUD

Thanks to the Project AWARE people, I didn't expect anything like this, which made it kind of special!

Now on to a new fundraiser!

Camille

Thursday, August 18, 2011

PADI IE on Koh Tao, Thailand for August another 100% score

PADI IE on Koh Tao, Thailand for August another 100% score

Gianfranco (aka Mauro) and Erica are no longer PADI Divemaster. As of today they can call themselves PADI Instructors! Congratulations, all the hard work during the recent Koh Samui IDC has paid off! They bagged this PADI IE on Koh Tao convincingly.

From left to right; Gianfranco, myself, Erica and Thomas, who is a PADI Examiner

The PADI IE actually turned out to be easy, something I told them during the very first day of the actual IDC, but so far nobody believed that at face value and yet, here we are! Well done you two.

If you're interested in participating in one of my IDC's, the next PADI IDC is starting 21st August on Gili Air in Indonesia followed by an IDC on Koh Phangan starting 2nd September, followed by another IDC on Gili Air starting 21st September and my first IDC in Dauin, Philippines, starting 20th October. Please look here for my current PADI IDC schedule.

Camille

Monday, August 15, 2011

PADI Emergency Oxygen Instructor course on Koh Samui, Thailand for August 2011

PADI Emergency Oxygen Instructor course on Koh Samui, Thailand for August 2011

After having completed the current August PADI IDC on Koh Samui we continued on and had a look at the PADI Emergency Oxygen Instructor course with Mauro and Erica.

One for the album, from left to right; Erica, myself and Gianfranco

Boyz and toys

Hmmm, tasting good!

We used the local hyperbaric chamber in Bang Rak and an introductory tour of the Chamber was included. A busy day and tomorrow we're off to Koh Tao for the PADI IE. Stay tuned on this channel for more updates!

Camille

Sunday, August 14, 2011

PADI IDC Koh Samui, Thailand for August 2011 is in the bag

PADI IDC Koh Samui, Thailand for August 2011 is in the bag

Although we will put the finishing touches tomorrow to the current PADI IDC on Koh Samui, it's once more an IDC bagged on Koh Samui! In cooperation with 'The Dive Academy', it's the 4th one this year!

Mauro getting his color coordination right for his weight belt

It was a steep learning curve for both of them and we had lots of fun as well. With the small classroom size there was plenty of individual attention for both of them.

Now open the manual to page ......., Erica scoring another point!

Tuesday we'll go over to Koh Tao so Mauro and Erica can participate in the PADI IE there. Cross your fingers for them whilst they kick some ass over there!

If you're interested in participating in one of my IDC's, the next PADI IDC is starting 21st August on Gili Air in Indonesia followed by an IDC on Koh Phangan starting 2nd September, followed by another IDC on Gili Air starting 13th September and my first IDC in Dauin, Philippines, starting 20th October. Please look here for my current PADI IDC schedule.

Camille

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Suunto M5

Suunto M5

This M5 is a 'Versatile guidance for multi-sport exercise' as Suunto puts it. In my case, it's a wristwatch that monitors my running activities.

You may wonder what this has got to do with diving, well, for me it's not too difficult. If I want to keep my self in a healthy shape and keep fit for diving. I need to do something else than just standing in a classroom teaching PADI IDC's as a PADI Course Director and sitting in front of a computer, where I spend too much time if I'm not teaching or spending time with my family. My running activities which help me to stay in shape and fit, were screaming for a tool just like the Suunto M5.

To me, it has a lot to do with my diving, although it's mostly indirectly.

The picture above shows the actual wristwatch but also the three add-ons. The package comes with a heart rate monitor wrist belt and an optional foot POD (also available for cycling and GPS only) which tracks speed and distance and an optional mini USB stick, the Movestick mini which is compatible with my 64-bit computer and transfers my training data to Movescount.com.

My running 'career' started last year around January and since a few months I was considering buying a running computer. Initially I didn't even know that Suunto made anything ouside of diving computer, so I was pleasantly surprised to find out that they among other also had running computers.


Since I start using the M5 my information gathering is much more precise which was exactly what I was looking. The heart rate monitor goes around your chest and sends all kind of information like your current heart rate and Calories burning to your wristwatch. The watch itself allows various functions that are easy to access and control like; Automatically adapting training program for the next 7 days (fitness improvement, weight management, free training) and workout suggestion: ideal duration and intensity or recovery time suggestion after exercise. All very handy.

The display is big enough but unfortunately only one piece of information is displayed in a big format and with my relatively bad eye sight, it's difficult to see the smaller additional information. That's the only thing I can think of that could be improved.

It's a great computer and I'm very happy with it and recommend the M5 for anyone who's looking for a multi-functional sport and exercise watch.

amille

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Samui August 2011 IDC is half way!

Samui August 2011 IDC is half way!

Today we passed the half way mark of the current PADI IDC on Koh Samui. Mauro and Erica are going strong and we get lots of topics covered in a timely way, due to the small class room size.

Erica rescuing Mauro during a practice of Rescue Exercise # 7

After completing this current IDC, they will attend a PADI IE from 16th to 18th August to be held on Koh Tao. Stay tuned for updates on Erica's and Mauro's adventures during this IDC and their IE on Koh Tao.

The 19th August will see me boarding a plane to Bangkok, so I can hop on the early flight Bali -> Lombok -> Gili Air in order to start the next IDC there come 21st August!

Camille

Monday, August 8, 2011

PADI IDC for August 2011 on Koh Samui, Thailand has started

PADI IDC for August 2011 on Koh Samui has started

Yesterday the whistle was blown to kick off the August 2011 PADI IDC on Koh Samui. It's a nice and small one with two Dutch candidates, Mauro and Erica and one of them is my 300th IDC candidate!

Exam time

Over the last two days we conducted the obligatory Theory exams, worked in the pool on the skill circuit and I did a few presentations.

Before the pool today at the Kandaburi resort in Chaweng

Mauro during the air depletion skill

Erica showing off the CESA

It's early days and we've got another 7 days to go! Between 16th and 18th August they will be on Koh Tao for a PADI IE, so stay tuned for more updates.

If you're interested in participating in one of my IDC's, the next PADI IDC is starting 21st August on Gili Air in Indonesia followed by an IDC on Koh Phangan in September. More programs for the remainder of the year will be conducted on Gili Air in Indonesia and Dauin in the Philippines among others, please look here for my schedule.

Camille

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Vader by Gull, my new mask!

Vader by Gull, my new mask!

During my recent visit to South Korea, I went to Seoul to meet up with the PADI's Korean regional manager Boo Kyung Kim and besides some friendly business talk, he took me also to Hana Plaza, a dive center near the Olympic Park.

The Vader mask by Gull

Besides buying some exclusive PADI clothing, like a wind breaker, EFR shirt and plenty of caps, I also set my eyes on a mask by Japanese equipment manufacture Gull. I already own a pair of Gull fins, but now I added a great mask, the Vader!

It has UV protection but it also has blue mirror lenses, so you can't look inside the mask whilst you wear it! The blue lenses also make for a slightly better underwater sensation of colors.

The silicone of the mask is just fantastic, it's about the softest silicon I have ever put my face on!

The only thing missing now is going for a dive soon, so I can test my new mask out! Looks like the Samui IDC starting this 7th August is going the be the right place to use it for the first time.

Camille

Monday, August 1, 2011

PADI Emergency Instructor training in South Korea

PADI Emergency Instructor training in South Korea

Just after the PADI IE was completed successfully in Deoksan in South Korea, we got the emergency oxygen unit out and started some more training before we hit the road back to Osan!

From left to right; Jay, Clyde, Hai-Wen, Luis, Bok Hee, Michael and myself

WE used the outstanding facilities at The Marine Tourism & Leisure Sports Centre / 해양관광레저스포츠센터 in Deoksan, with to BK!

Luis in action during the assembly of the oxygen unit

We also completed the Nitrox Specialty Instructor course during our afternoon stay in Deoksan.

If you're interested in participating in one of my IDC's, the next PADI IDC is starting 7th August on Koh Samui followed by an IDC on Koh Phangan in September, both in Thailand. More programs for the remainder of the year will be conducted on Gili Air in Indonesia and Dauin in the Philippines among others, please look here for my schedule.

Camille