Monday, December 29, 2008

Who Says Working Backwards Isn't the Way to Go?

Austin's main goal when on island was to become PADI Scuba Certified. He has already finished four discovery scuba dives with our premier dive charter Big Island Divers. Typically you would begin by taking the PADI open water recreational diving course before doing this many open water dives. Timing of our vacation however prevented us from following the most logical and perhaps more practical approach.

Just three days ago we bought the PADI open water manual along with the electronic RDP or recreational dive planner and the DVD that corresponded with all of the material. With a whirlwind study regime he read all two hundred fifty pages of the manual, completed all of the quick multiple choice reviews, and finished the knowledge reviews at the end of each chapter. He also watched the video to help him visualize what he could expect with each of four confined water dives in a pool and he will also complete four open water dives in the ocean. Today was his first day of pool diving and as we left him in capable hands he was enthusiastic and didn't seem to mind that we were leaving him for eight hours to basically go to school while on vacation.
Dennis and I drove around Kona and went house hunting via driving through different neighborhoods and enjoying the aloha spirit that exists here. We then took Darby to eat lunch at Little Caesar's Pizza and then we went to watch the movie "Marley and Me." While we were able to keep her occupied while waiting for Austin we are going to go snorkeling tomorrow instead. The ocean and beach are much more fun than what we did today.

Upon returning to the pool I found Austin working learning to orally inflate his BCD or Buoyancy Control Device. I remember doing that myself and although it wasn't the easiest to do, you need to know how for one of those just in case moments.

He then dove to the bottom of the pool to practice an "out of air" simulation. The instructor turns off his oxygen cylinder so he can feel what it is like to be out of air, he then gives the instructor the out of air sign underwater and she immediately turned on the air again.
Although he did many other exercises while we were not there those were the ones that we were able to view, Darby from the outside of the fence line wishing she could join the fun.

After this first day one of the other students (she was a mother of two teenagers) commented to me on how polite and enjoyable my son was during the class. (She was very kind and I'm patting myself on my back)

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