The island rebounded impressively fast from Tropical Storm Harvey. After just a day and a half, the ocean was calm again and I got started on my PADI Scuba Diver certification at Anemona Divers. To get the preliminary certification you have to read 3 chapters in the Open Water Certification book, watch 3 videos, take 3 short quizzes, complete 3 confined water dives where you demonstrate skills you’ve learned, and go on 2 open water dives (the fun part!). They say you can do it in 2 days, but the book will take longer to read than you think so give yourself more time than that if you’re planning to get certified. Or better yet, do the book and video work online BEFORE your trip so you don’t have to spend precious vacation hours studying!
The PADI Scuba Diver certification allows me to go on dives to a depth of 40 feet as long as I’m accompanied by a divemaster or instructor. The PADI Open Water Diver certification allows you to go to a depth of 60 feet, and you don’t have to go with a divemaster, but you do have to go with a certified buddy. PADI is all about the buddy system. I’m thinking about getting this certification level next time I’m in the tropics, though I don’t plan on diving without a divemaster. I can get horribly lost in a grocery store, so diving without a guide just isn’t a good idea.
Oh, protip for Anemona Divers: if you pay cash, you don’t have to pay the 16% Honduran tax. The PADI Scuba Diver certification cost $210, plus the $40 book.
On our dives we saw puffer fish, big moray eels, a couple of king crabs, barracuda, a school of sardines that react as a group to your movements, yellowhead jawfish which are these funny fish that go in and out of holes on the ocean floor, and a lot of neat coral formations. We didn’t get clear pictures of all that, but here are the pics from our dives that are of posting quality:
Also we did more snorkeling!
This was a fun and relaxing trip. We met some cool people, ate some good food, drank some Salva Vidas (the local beer), had a thrilling encounter with a cockroach named Houdini, spent a lot of time in the water, and heard some reggae songs so many times I fear I will forever be singing them in the shower.