Thursday, August 30, 2012

PADI IE on Gili Air, Indonesia for August 2012, Mission completed!

It's been blood, sweat and tears and lots of nerves and waiting and hanging around but finally, around 9am this morning it was official, all the 7 IDC candidates from PADI 5* IDC Center Oceans 5 on Gili Air in Indonesia had passed their PADI IE with flying colors.

The whole group, from left to right; Agnes, Tim Marshall (PADI Examiner), Lara, Max, Matt, Cindy, Sander (Master Instructor), Signe, Mariusz and Camille (PADI Course Director)

My job is done and I'm on my way to the next PADI IDC! Well done all, congratulations and good luck, safe diving and teaching in your future instructor careers!

From left to right; Ayala PADI Course Director), Emma (Regional manager for Indonesia), Tim (PADI examiner) and myself

During the PADI IE on Gili Air, the regional Manager for Indonesia, Emma Hewitt came over to give some moral support, which is highly appreciated and for me a great opportunity to meet up with her.
Above is the picture which also includes Tim, the examiner and Ayala, PADI Course Director on Gili Trawangan.

If you're interested in living your dream and becoming a PADI dive instructor, your next chance is the PADI IDC on Koh Phangan in Thailand, starting 4th September, followed by 18th September in Dauin, Philippines and 9th October sees a PADI IDC on Koh Samui in Thailand.

If you like to receive some information, contact me or get in touch through Skype, my Skype name is 'cdcamille'.

See you there!


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

PADI Emergency Oxygen Instructor course on Gili Air in Indonesia for August 2012 is in the bag

After all the hectic and at times stress full days of the recent PADI IDC on Gili Air, it was time for some fun and relaxation and Matt and Mariusz took part in 3 PADI Instructor Specialties; DUP (Digital Underwater Photography), Nitrox and Emergency Oxygen Instructor.

Mariusz, me and Matt in front of Oceans 5

We had a good dive at Shark Point in front of Gili Trawangan and yesterday morning we spend time in the classroom covering knowledge development and some hands on experience for the Oxygen course.

Matt and Mariusz exploring the oxygen set

Today they're all caught up in the PADI IE and soon they should be the newest PADI Instructors on the block!


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

PADI IDC Gili Air, Indonesia for August 2012: Mission completed!

At last, all the long days in the classroom and the hours underwater in the pool and open water were over. Yesterday we completed the last classroom presentation by me and the last bits and pieces of this PADI IDC were taken care of and some remedial training was taken care of for those who wanted or needed it.
I like to express my thanks to PADI 5* IDC Center Oceans 5, Sander and Simone for having me and organising this program!

On the way to one of the Open Water IDC training dives, from left to right; Agnes, Signe, Matt, Sander, Mariusz, Lara, Max and Cindy.

It was a challenging program and as usual, the program had it's ups and downs but we also managed to have some fun and more than just a couple of laughs.

Cindy during her Open Water presentation of a CESA

Overall everybody learned heaps of new things, how to control students, how to position yourself, how to deal with student problems underwater and with a few stumbles and getting up again, they should be ready to start the PADI IE later today.

Max, Matt, Marius and Lara during the lift bag skill in open water

As usual I also threw in a few work shops; knot tying (bowline, two half itches and the sheet bend), descents, control, rescue and DSD just to name a few.

Cindy, Signe and Agnes with the lift bag

So, after 10 days, it's all done and dusted and the August version of the Gili Air IDC has been completed. The PADI IDC's are becoming more and more popular here on idyllic Gili Air and we happily invite you to participate in the next program here, starting 22nd October. Please contact me or get in touch Skype, my Skype name is 'cdcamille'.

The PADI IE is coming to town

Other PADI IDC's are starting 4th September on Koh Phangan, Thailand, 18th September in Dauin, Philippines and 9th October on Koh Samui, Thailand, a home game for me.
If you are interested in any of these three programs or an IDC at another location or moment in time (see my PADI IDC schedule).

Hope to see you soon!


Thursday, August 23, 2012

The PADI IDC on Gili Air in Indonesia for August 2012 has passed the half way mark

Yes, time flies when you're having fun! The PADI IDC on Gili Air in Indonesia in conjunction with PADI 5* IDC center Oceans 5 for August 2012 has passed the half way mark.

The group during confined open water

Unfortunately we lost Paden due to a dengue fever related illness, but he seems to be up and running again and is planning to participate and continue his IDC adventures in the October IDC here on Gili Air which will kick off 23rd October.

Matt during the air depletion skill

Right now the 7 candidates are sweating it out over their Theory exams and this gives me time to ctach up on red tape and updating the blog!

Hair is everywhere

As usual it's an international affair, candidates originate from Wales, France, the USA, Poland, Denmark and Australia with staff from the Netherlands.

Lara selling a knife during her knowledge development presentation

The IDC's on Gili Air are really picking up in just their second year. Last year we had 12 IDC candidates over 4 IDC programs and we reached that number during this IDC with just the second IDC of the year! Gili Air is hot! Come and join us and enjoy the laid back feel of the island where no cars and motorbikes are allowed but you receive free breakfast, lunch and accommodation during your PADI IDC.

Agnes and Signe during an alternate air source skill

We covered a lot of ground so far with classroom presentations by me, knowledge development and confined water presentations by the candidates with loads of rescue exercise # 7 the unresponsive diver at the surface skill practice thrown in as well and today, after the exams we will hit open water for the first time.

Cindy telling us to pay attention during her CESA

All over it's an action packed IDC with never a dull moment, including the ups and downs that go hand in hand with IDC's but we also have lots of fun and laughter.

Mariusz during the mask removal and replacement skill

There are just 4 more days to go and we will have a day and a half off before the PADI IE will start during which we conduct some PADI Specialty Instructor training with hopefully some good dives what shouldn't rally be a problem here, diving around the Gili's is awesome!

Sander, who's staffing during this IDC, during rescue exercise # 7

If you're interested in joining one of my PADI IDC programs, your next opportunity is already 4th September when the PADI IDC on Koh Phangan in Thailand kicks off, followed by an IDC in Dauin, Philippines starting 18th September and an IDC on my home turf, Koh Samui in Thailand starting 9th October.
See you there!


Sunday, August 19, 2012

PADI IDC on Gili Air, Indonesia for August 2012 has started

In conjunction with PADI 5* IDC center Oceans 5 on Gili Air in Indonesia, the August PADI IDC is under way! It's a busy one, with 8 candidates from all over the world again!

From left to right, Matt, Cindy, Max, Paden, Mariusz, Lara, Signe and Agnes

They originate from Wales, France, USA, Poland and Denmark with Sander from the Netherlands, owner and MI of Oceans as staff instructor and another Dutchy, myself as the CD.

We kicked off in the usual matter, taking care of the red tape in the morning, followed by the Introduction presentation a theory exam and pool work. Today more of the same is in the making.

Stay tuned for more updates of this busy IDC on Gili Air.

If you're interested in participating in an IDC with me, your next chance will be the PADI IDC on Koh Phangang, Thailand, starting 4th September, followed by an IDC starting 18th September in Dauin, Philippines and than it's a home game with an IDC on Koh Samui, Thailand starting 9th october.


Thursday, August 9, 2012

PADI recreational Side mount course day 2 in Subic, Philippines

After the initial two side mount dives on 6th August, the diving was cancelled on 7th August due to the rather unexpected and unusual flooding around the Philippines and in the Subic area in particular.
Yesterday the weather turned for the better again and the dives were on!

Me pushing one of the side mount tanks in front of me

Due to the extreme weather conditions, there was a 4 meter, very cold fresh water layer on top of the salt water around Subic Bay with no visibility at all! Once you got below this 4 meter fresh water layer the visibility cleared up although it was fairly dark if you went deep. Hence the greenish color in the pictures.

Andy Davis, my instructor for the side mount course

We repeated and completed most of the previous skills again and one of the advantages of using a side mount set up is that it will allow you to un-clip your side mounted tanks and push them in front of you, which in turn allows you to wriggle yourself through small openings. This is great for wreck and cave diving.

From left to right, Myself, Andy Davis and Bruce Konefe

Andy was a great source of inspiration and knowledge again and he most certainly pushed my borders in a positive way and I've come away as a more complete and knowledgeable diver. Thanks for your time and dedication Andy, it was great fun and I hope we can soon complete the Tec version of the side mount course.

Cave and tec legend Bruce Konefe came also up to Subic and he's going to continue to teach an advanced Tec wreck diving course to Andy. Completing the circle for Andy from instructor to student just overnight! It was great meeting Bruce again as well.

The video above will show you the advantage of side mount diving, by me demonstrating how to push the tanks in front of you and clipping on again.

Shorty I will leave for Manila and back home to Bangkok but this course in Subic Bay will be a dive high light of the year for me. Once more thanks to Andy, a very concise, knowledgeable and safety concerned mentor in all the right ways! If you're interested in knowing what else he does, please visit his website.


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

PADI Recreational Side Mount course in Subic Bay, Philippines with Andy Davis

It was time for something else and one of my internet friends, Andy Davis, who lives in Manila, Philippines, was willing to teach me that something else and new; the PADI recreational side mount course. You can read Andy's blog entry here.

I was very excited, first of all to meet Andy, we build up some mutual respect and friendship over time online and also I was excited to get to dive on a side mount set up. I heard only good things about and was roaring to go!

Conditions weren't very good the first day, the Philippines are currently undergoing some serious flooding and Subic, where Andy and me met, is no exception. We still managed to go out though and after some elaboration and explanation and messing around with setting up the equipment, we completed our confined water dive and got two real fantastic dives in.

Diving on side mounts is really different, you don't need a conventional recreational BCD or tech wing or anything like that, but just a simple, flexible back plate with a couple of d-rings and two bungees to keep the tanks, one left and one right, under control. Since you dive with two tanks, you carry twice the amount of air with you but you also need two first stages and SPG's (with very short high pressure hoses), a short hosed second stage and a long hosed second stage.

The two tanks before the dive, after set up

Your weights are distributed in the back plate and you can tuck a wright on each bottom side of the tank to lessen the upward buoyancy of the tanks whilst they empty during the dive. A lot of the skills deal with the regulators, recovering a regulator, switching regulators, out of air simulations and a couple of hovering skills, un-clipping the tanks and putting them in front of you so you can wiggle your way through small entrances and/or exits.

The Hollis sms 100 bcd system

This was all done under the expert, relaxed and fun teaching style of Andy. he's very safety conscious and knows all the dive sites and wrecks in Subic Bay inside out from over hundreds of dives on them.
We dived 'the Barges' and 'El Capitan', both world war 2 area wreck dive sites.

The dives on the side mount system were what I expected, interesting, new, a little bit challenging in the beginning, but I'm converted, I would dive side mounts all the time from now on if I could afford the set up! I hope to be able to complete the dives first of all for this course, due to the flood situation around the Philippines and Subic (our dives today were cancelled) and secondly to complete the next step, the Tec side mount course and log enough dives so I can teach this soon as well! Thanks to Andy for his support and mentoring and the fun and excitement provided!


Sunday, August 5, 2012

PADI IE in Dauin, Philippines for July 2012 successfully completed

After two days of action, waiting periods and lots of nail biting, the PADI IE in Dauin was finally over yesterday and all three of my candidates passed with very high scores in all parts of the exam! The PADI IDC was in conjunction with PADI CDC Center Sea Explorers in Dauin, Philippines.

The first day, classroom only with 6 exams and a classroom presentation was conducted in Dumaguete and day number 2 was conducted at the Pura Vida Beach and Dive resort in Dauin.
During both and on all 4 parts of the exam all 3 of them had high scores and all the hard work during the PADI IDC in Dauin paid off!

Well done to all three of you, Matt, Nick and Rich and also congratulations to Marcia for completing her IDCS course and thanks to Johan and Andreas for staffing this IDC.

If you're interested in participating in one of my PADI IDC's or in an IDCS course, your next chance is later this month, starting 19th August (early prep starts 17th!) on Gili Air in Indonesia with Oceans 5, followed by a PADI IDC on Koh Phangan in Thailand starting 4th September with Haad Yao Divers, just to get back to Dauin, Philippines for an IDC starting 18th September with Sea Explorers and 9th October sees a PADI IDC kick off on Koh Samui, Thailand.

See you there and if you would like more information, contact me or for the Philippines IDC programs contact me here.


Thursday, August 2, 2012

Scuba diving at Apo Island, Philippines

Today was a well deserved day off after having completed the PADI IDC for July 2012 in Dauin and yesterdays EFRI course. What better way to spend this day off than with diving? Apo island was calling!

Porcelain crab

After almost a week of strong wind and lots of rain, with only cancelled trips to Apo island, today was the first time in over a week that a scheduled trip actually took place! Talking about perfect timing! tomorrow I won't have time to go since the PADI IE will kick off at 8am.

Scorpion fish

This well known dive location has many dive spots and we got to dove three of them today, Coconut point, Mamsa and Cogon.

Barred fin moray eel

We had three very relaxing dives and together with Marcia and Matt from the IDC we enjoyed ourselves. My Canon underwater housing actually played along during the first two dives and luckily I cloud take some pictures, displayed in this post.

Black spotted puffer fish

Besides the pictured animals here, we also saw two turtles, various nudi branches, 2 frog fish and plenty of other critters. Either the pictures didn't work out or my camera decided to not play along..........

Banded sea krait

It was a very relaxing day and I enjoyed getting wet again. Now it's showtime for the IDC candidates and the PADI IE is now looming on tomorrow mornings horizon.

Stay tuned for more updates.


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

EFRI Course in Dauin, Philippines, August 2012

Yesterday we completed the PADI IDC in Dauin, Philippines for July 2012 and today Matt went on to complete his EFR Instructor course.

Matt, a mannequin and me in front of the Dauin Sea Explorers office

Nick and Rich had already their EFRI courses, so it was private tuition for Matt today.

Matt in control of the AED

With just Matt in the classroom and having completed already some work during the previous days (evenings) we had an early day which allowed us to have a great muck dive on the Sea Explorers house reef at Luca Sanctuary during the afternoon.