Monday, January 30, 2012

PADI IE in Sydney January 2012, Pablo passed with flying colors

PADI IE in Sydney January 2012, Pablo passed with flying colors

Pablo, who completed his IDC at Oceans 5 on Gili Air in Indonesia with me in November 2011, passed his PADI IE in Sydney, Australia with flying colors. Well done Pablo.

Pablo on the left and myself in front of Oceans 5 on Gili Air

This is a very strong effort that Pablo put in, considering that all his training was over two months ago, hats off and good luck with your future dive career. Almost every day after the days work during the IDC, Pablo went for some reef dives, which I joined a few times and really enjoyed!

If you're interested in becoming a PADI Instructor, check my schedule or contact me for more information. The next PADI IDC is scheduled to start 10th February on Koh Phangang, followed by an IDC on Gili Air starting 23rd February and an IDC on Malapascua in the Philippines starting 6th March. Looking forward seeing you there!

Camille

Thursday, January 26, 2012

First PADI IE in 2012 successfully completed on Koh Tao, Thailand

First PADI IE in 2012 successfully completed on Koh Tao, Thailand

After two and a half nerve wrecking days, Phoenix or aka Frank rose from the ashes and he's now officially a PADI Instructor after successfully passing the PADI IE on Koh Tao. Congratulations Frank.

From left to right, Camille, Tim the PADI Examiner and Frank after the PADI IE closing ceremony

Frank passed with flying colors, only 2 mistakes out of 110 Theory and Standards questions and 3 times max score of 5 and one time 4.2 in his 4 presentations.

If you want to live the dream and become a PADI Instructor as well, join me in one of my PADI IDC's, check out my schedule or contact me with any questions you may have.

Camille

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

PADI Member Update 2012 on Koh Tao, Thailand

PADI Member Update 2012 on Koh Tao, Thailand

Since the update on Koh Samui will be when I'm planning to conduct a PADI IDC on Gili Air in Indonesia, I took the opportunity to visit the PADI Member Update on Koh Tao, a day ahead of the PADI IE which will start today.

PADI Member Update 2012

The location on Koh Tao was the same as last year at Choppers Bar on Sairee Beach, it was hard to believe but there were even more people than last year and even the upstairs room seems to become too small!

Tim was introduced under loud cheers from the crowd, it seems he's rather popular on Koh Tao. Unfortunately the sound system didn't work properly, it was difficult to follow what was being said and to stay focused, especially in a non air-conditioned and very smoky room!

Region 26, better known as Thailand, has now two Regional managers instead of the original one RM. Since Koh Tao is too big and too important for PADI, a large chunk of their business in the Asia Pacific region is generated each year on Koh Tao, it seems a wise and long overdue decision. Last year saw the introduction oh Tony Andrews as new RM for Thailand and this year sees the addition of Tim Hunt.

Tim in action during the update

Tim, who for a long time was an active Course Director on Koh Tao will look after Koh Tao, Koh Phangan, Koh Samui, Bangkok, Pattaya and all Northern and Eastern locations whilst Tony will look after Phuket and the West coast of Thailand.

Camille

Sunday, January 22, 2012

EFR Instructor and Emergency Oxygen Instructor course on Koh Samui

EFR Instructor and Emergency Oxygen Instructor course on Koh Samui

After having just completed the PADI IDC on Koh Samui, the first one of the year, it was time to move on and tackle the EFR Instructor and Emergency Oxygen Instructor courses.


Frank and me had a day at the local re-compression chamber and made good use of the on site classroom.

Getting technical during the O2 course

We got both courses out of the way and tomorrow I'm off to Koh Tao for the yearly PADI Member Forum, directly followed the next day by Frank's PADI IE.

Stay tuned for more updates from Koh Tao .

Saturday, January 21, 2012

The first PADI IDC of 2012 has been completed

The first PADI IDC of 2012 has been completed

It's all done and dusted, the first PADI IDC on Koh Samui in 2012 has been completed. Well done Frank! The IDC was in conjunction with PADI 5* IDC center 'The Dive Academy' on Koh Samui.

Frank during a knowledge development presentation

Despite Frank being the only student during this program, we had a good time and it was a fun IDC.

Claire and Paul helping out during confined water

During the confined and open water presentations, we received support and help and most importantly, 'bodies' from Claire, Paul and Chris. Thanks guys!

Regulator recovery

On the 24th January it's off to Koh Tao for the PADI IE, so stay tuned and see if Frank 'graduates' on 26th January!

In the meantime, let me know if you're interested in participating in a PADI IDC with me in either Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines or South Korea and contact me so I can send you some useful information about my programs.
My next IDC is scheduled to start either 6th February on Koh Lanta or 10th February on Koh Phangan, followed by an IDC starting 23rd February on Gili Air in Indonesia.

Camille

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

PADI IDC on Koh Samui, January 2012 is half way

PADI IDC on Koh Samui, January 2012 is half way

Time flies when you're having fun the PADI IDC on Koh Samui in conjunction with 'The Dive Academy' has already reached the half way mark.

Frank during one of his Knowledge Development presentations

Plenty of presentations by me where on the agenda and we're making good pace on these, lots of time has been spent in the pool and Frank has gotten his first scores as well, which so far, were all good!

The giant stride entry

We're lucky with the weather during this IDC, we only had one non stop rainy day and plenty of sun afterwards, which started to heat the pool up today.

Neutral buoyancy LPI

More classroom, confined water and soon more exams and open water will be on Frank's menu. The fun just doesn't stop!

Stay tuned for more updates on this IDC and if you're interested in participating in one of my IDC programs, have a look at my schedule and see if any of the dates fit your schedule. With 21 porgrams scheduled this year, I'm sure that some of the dates should work.

Camille

Saturday, January 14, 2012

The first PADI IDC in 2012 is under way

The first PADI IDC in 2012 is under way

It's a one on one PADI IDC on Koh Samui with Frank being the only student in class, so it's a slow start this year.

Today we completed a lot of red tape. some exams and a skill circuit in the pool under a grey sky.

Frank sweating it out on his own over the exams

2012 has kicked off and there will be a few more updates on this IDC before Frank is going to hit the PADI IE on Koh Tao after the IDC.

My next IDC is scheduled to start 10th February on Koh Phangan. Contact me for more details.

Camille

Friday, January 13, 2012

Imad and Christophe are accepted into the PADI CDTC for March 2012

Imad and Christophe are accepted into the PADI CDTC for March 2012

The PADI CDTC is the PADI Course Director Training Course and is a rather prestigious event for which you have to apply and get selected and invited to participate by PADI. Each year there are only two such programs in the whole world and in each program only around 40 applicants are accepted, out of roughly 50 to 60 applications for each program.
This program will certify you as a PADI Course Director.

Imad and Christophe specifically came to staff IDC's with me last year in order to prepare and get my guidance so they could apply for the course and both got accepted. Congratulations!

Imad during the October/November 2011 IDC on Koh Samui next to the pool

Imad originates from Lebanon but lives in the United Arab Emirates. He completed his IDC with me back in February 2009 and he went on to complete his IDCS course with me back in November that same year. In May 2010 and last October/November he came back to staff with me and the latter IDC was purely to get more practice and guidance for his CDTC application.

Well done Imad, you came from a long way and I'm proud to have been part of your road to fulfilling your dream of becoming a PADI Course Director. Congratulations.

Christophe during the recent October/November IDC on Koh Samui during one of his classroom presentations

Christophe is French but he lives in the Seychelles. After being rejected last year for his previous CDTC application last year, he was recommend to me and he followed up on it, accumulating in planning to staff two IDC's with me towards the end of last year. He participated in the October/November IDC on Koh Samui but got dengue fever before the start of the next IDC on Gili Air in Indonesia, only to find out that even if he would have been able to staff this IDC, he wouldn't have gotten the credit for it.

Nonetheless, we had good fun on Koh Samui and I'm very happy for Christophe that my guidance helped him into being accepted into the March 2012 CDTC program.

Imad and Christophe, you will be re-united again in Malaysia come March. I'm sure you both will enjoy the course and all the best from me!

If you have plans for becoming a PADI Course Director and are interested in staffing PADI IDC's with me, please contact me and I can explain the special Staffing programs I have on offer.

Camille

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Continue helping in getting shark fin soup off the Makro Thailand shelves

Continue helping in getting shark fin soup off the Makro Thailand shelves

Or rather, the Makro Thailand freezers, that is. As already blogged about back in December 2009, Makro Thailand has shark fin soup on offer in their freezers.

Makro Thailand bi weekly flyer with a special offer on shark fin soup

Earlier this week I already posted about the upcoming Chinese New Year and that the struggle to ban shark finning continues. Especially with the Chinese New Year coming up 29th January, the shark fin soup will be on the menu at many Chinese oriented restaurants.

With this Chinese New Year on the horizon, Makro Thailand has a special offer in their bi weekly magazine in which you can save 19.-THB on a shark fin soup.

On the Makro Thailand website, there's a 'contact us' page which I urge you to use. Please contact them by means of this page, fill out the form (no Makro member ship number is required) and ask them to stop selling shark fin products and spread the word!

Thanks for helping out!

Camille

Monday, January 9, 2012

Updated information on jelly fish sting handling

Updated information on jelly fish sting handling


Here's an update on my most popular post on this blog, a post about Box jelly fish warning in Thailand.

Please check the video below and see if you can endure watching it until the end.

I fully appreciate that this was hard to watch. Now, to continue this experiment, please have a look at the video below and let me know which one you prefer to watch.

The information provided in both videos is pretty much the same but I prefer watching the first video!

To get serious though, nobody would expect you to go out on a beach with shaving foam, but you would have that in your hotel room or can buy it at a nearby pharmacy. You also don't wan't to touch the affected body area without gloves!

To really 'rub it in'. have a look at one more video of the result of actual box jelly fish stings on June 20th, 2009, in Belitung Island, Indonesia.



Camille

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Say no to shark finning

Say no to shark finning

Chinese New year is coming up again soon, 23rd January 2011 and the call for saying "No to shark fin soup" continues to grow.

This years picture for the 'Say no to shark fin soup' campaign

Many people in Singapore and Hong Kong start to support the campaign but still not everybody is aware and it's not easy breaking life long habits! It's good to know and see a growing support from among other local divers!

One of the the Sea Shepherds web pages had these interesting wedding pictures
Many organisations are very active in campaigning against shark finning, Project AWARE, Sea Shepherds and Sharkwater are just a few of them. Support these and other organisations that campaign. It's late bot not too late, yet!

It really is time to put the pieces back together!

Camille

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Are You Ready to Go 100% AWARE?

Are You Ready to Go 100% AWARE?

Happy New Year to you all and what better start to the new year than sharing a Project Aware message with you;

Pledge your ongoing commitment to ocean protection and go 100% AWARE in 2012.
Project AWARE is launching a new partnership program to help PADI Dive Centres integrate ocean protection priorities into their business and fund critical conservation initiatives at the same time.

The new 2012 Limited Edition Project AWARE card!

Beginning January 2012, dive centers and resorts taking part in the programme will ensure all of their student divers receive the Project AWARE version of their PADI certification card.
100% AWARE donations will target protection for the world’s most threatened shark species and the removal and prevention of marine debris from treasured underwater environments. Together we can make ocean protection a reality.

Some interesting facts;
  • Less than 1% of our ocean is protected.
  • 7% of all PADI divers choose to support ocean protection initiatives by making a minimum donation to receive the Project AWARE version of their PADI certification card.
  • AWARE cards are our largest fundraising effort.
With the 100% AWARE partnership we can make 2012 the biggest year for ocean protection! Make shark conservation and marine debris prevention a priority and become one of the first dive centers to become 100% AWARE in 2012 or one of the first divers to be certified by a 100% AWARE dive center.
Whether you're a diver or PADI Professional, supporting the 100% AWARE program will make a difference!

Thank you for your continued support. We wish you all a happy festive season and look forward to taking action with you in 2012 to protect our ocean planet – one dive at a time ...or One AWARE Certification Card at a Time!

Project AWARE and Camille