July 22, 2010 at 10:38 pm (friends, life!, pictures)

i’ve finally completed my PADI advanced diver’s course at Pulau Dayang. that’s one less thing-to-do this summer! we were there for a total of 4 days and 3 nights, taking a bus first to Mersing, and then a boat from the jetty to Dayang.

the camp consisted of 10 dives over the 4 days, including a deep dive, drift dive, a sunset dive and a night dive. a typical day would be breakfast, morning dive, back for lunch, 2 more dives, dinner and then a night dive. literally eat, sleep, dive – with whatever other land/beach/boat activities we could squeeze in between.

diving is a social event, and how much fun you have is really dependant on the company. lucky for me though, i was with a crazy bunch! and that includes both my fellow camp participants, as well as all the dive masters/instructors.

photo credit to Luc, Glenda, Cin Heng, Benjamin, Aldwin etc, as i was too lazy to take any even though i brought my own camera. besides, i had this sneaky feeling that i could steal tons anyway from other people, and as you can see from below, i was kinda right!

4 days on paradise island :]

our lodging. looks extremely pristine, surrounded by the trees, rocks and all, doesn’t it?

the pier leading up to the jetty. i love this shot!

the boat from which we made most of our dives

Luc, Damien and Sam

time to jump! walking about with flippers on makes me feel like a penguin

taking the plunge into the deep blue

Sam’s turn! one hand on mask and regulator, the other on weight belt. big step forward…

clown fish are a common sight in Dayang

spotted eagle ray, a pretty rare sighting at Dayang,

and we finally saw our turtles!

obviously he’s used to being the star of the show

humphead fishes

we hunt in packs….heh i’m second from left!

a whole school of pencil fish


porcupine fish. haha SO CUTE!

surfacing! island behind looks right out of Lost doesn’t it

BCD inflated, and floating while waiting for the boat

at the end of the dive, and back to the boat! the tank always feels like a ton during the climb up. if the boatman wasn’t helping lift the tank like in the picture, you’d probably get many exhausted divers falling backwards into the sea again.

the Merry Men! back to the island for lunch.

swathes of beautiful beach

beach-chilling! my favourite pastime

the lunch spread

Sam and Zongda digging in

back to the jetty and onto the boat for the second dive

chilling on the sun deck in between dives!

i think this pic was taken from the sister boat with the open water divers, because i obviously missed the photographer.

haha i think Damien was trying to pull a “Jack, i’m flying!” here

our boat!

woah such a cool shot! forgot what i was turning to see though

maybe this! a puffer/box fish

exploring the underwater garden

slimy sea slug! well okay it’s not exactly slimey…just wanted to capture some alliteration there.

morray eel!

a whole family of them?

Glenda holding the buoy which we inflate to alert passing boats of our presence. surfacing divers + boat propellors don’t make for a very good combination, as you can probably imagine.

our deep dive! David giving us maths sums to do underwater to ensure that we weren’t under the influence of nitrogen narcosis, which tends to happen the deeper down you went.

dive buddy Damien on my left, getting the maths problem

and replying with the answer!

there aren’t really many fishes that deep down, the only major change is that the water gets quite a bit colder!

a stone fish, kudos to Luc’s sharp eyes. the following aquatic life were all found at shallower depths

really well-camouflaged isn’t it?

a lionfish! it’s spines are venomous. apparently divers kill them on sight in order to control their population growth. pity, that, as they are really majestic creatures underwater.

more sea slugs!

super big lobster, as large as my arm span! now if only i had a net….

puffer/box fish again!

lion fish again

haha random

our air in, air out! a record of how much oxygen we used in the water

David, one of our dive instructors

sharing a laugh, back on the boat. hahah Sing probably said something funny again.

when i’ve made my first million. wait make that second – the first is reserved for the Aston.

being underwater is only half the fun of going on a dive trip!

Team Dive Instructors after winning a point

and the spectators obviously enjoying the show being put up

none withstanding the half time pole-dance

time for dinner!

the typical fare on offer.

after dinner, it’s back into the sea for our evening dive

a GIGANTIC school of fish close to our jetty. think they were ikan bilis!

more jetty fauna!

an orangutan crab

the blue-spotted sting ray i spotted.

…i had a bucket of blue paint, a paintbrush and a lot of time to spare.

caverns are good places to hunt for interesting fishes! i always make sure i peer deep into them whenever i swim past one.

hha it looks like an ugly bug-eyed alien from outer-space here


everything is better when the sun goes down

returning after the night dive

but other late night activities still go on. like bridge! hahah check out the guns cards.
guitar sing-along sessions
Sam + Wilfred’s bed. i was at the bunk above
and the final group shot on the last day. end!

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