Behind the scenes

27 Jan

Right now Josette is playing with Keiran, Chris is outside doing some maintenance on Octopussy, the divers are due back in about 30 minutes and I am writing the newsletter (and now this blog at the same time). I was actually going to write a small section the newsletter about how we put in and maintain our moorings, and then as I started to write I realized that I had more to say about it and that it wouldn’t all fit in a small section in our monthly newsletter.

(By the way, if you haven’t signed up for our newsletter yet: SHAME ON YOU!!! Just click here to do that).

You see, there is just so much that we do behind the scenes that divers don’t realize. We work with the ocean, an ever changing and challenging medium whose inherent properties make it extremely difficult to work with. It corrodes almost everything that is in it over time, both the sea creatures that live in the ocean and also the ocean itself degrade our boats, our equipment and our moorings.

This means that every so often we have to go out and replace / fix the moorings which allow us to tie up to the dive sites. If we are diving in the Reserve then the Nature Reserve is supposed to look after the moorings, however this doesn’t always happen right away.

Moorings are, as you can imagine, super important to us, yet also a real pain. First of all it makes diving so much easier for our customers if there is a line to go descend with, but also, it makes things so much easier for our captain and crew as they can tie up, turn the engines off, and then get the divers in. With out a mooring it means that the captain has to drive the boat while the dive guide is getting everyone ready, then we have to drive to just over the site using the GPS and drop all our divers in at the same time. Then the captain has to follow their bubbles or surface marker buoy until they surface. This also means the boat is running the whole time which not only costs a lot of money by burning loads of fuel, but it is bad for the environment as well.

What we do is we have sunken moorings, this means that the main bouy is just below the surface. Why, you ask? Why not have that giant buoy on the surface so that it is easily seen and easy to pick up? Well, that is precisely why. We don’t want other diving centers, or fisherman, to know exactly where our dive sites are or to tie up to our moorings that we spend so much time caring for. Also, for some silly reason, it seems that when there is a large buoy on the surface other boats sort of gravitate towards it, not away. Doesn’t make sense, but it is true. Then, they often just go straight over the top and chop it to bits! Not good when the buoy itself is about $200 and the line an additional $100. I mean, I had absolutely no idea how expensive all this stuff was until I bought a diving center. I mean, isn’t there an expression “Money for old rope?” Well, that means nothing to me anymore because even old rope is useful, so you should spend money on it, right? Anyway, we sink the buoys, which is hard work, but they last a lot longer.

As you can imagine, there are a million different ways to rig up a mooring, but we have found the way that works best for us. (I would tell you, but then I would have to kill you. I mean, you could be one of our competitors and we can’t give away our tried and tested mooring technique… could I?) (Not that I think that our competitors are actually reading my blog… but they should be 🙂 I would read theirs if they had one.

Alright, alright. It is now the end of the day. My five minutes earlier that I had to write this ended as Josette left at 4 pm and then Keiran decided that I wasn’t allowed to do anything but take him outside and let him dig holes with Emma. He is now in bed, Chris is cooking dinner after a long day of hard work (I am a lucky woman) so I am going to sign off and share the photos of us putting the moorings in. Hard work, but everyone did a great job.

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(Sally wrote this blog 🙂 )

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