I thought that I would blog about Stuart as I haven’t done for awhile, and I love the face that he gives me when I tell him that I have written a blog about him. He sort of half smiles, quints his eyes, cocks his head to the side and says “What did you write about?” Sort of emphasizing each word, so it sounds more like “What. Did. You. Write. About.?”
Last time I wrote a blog entitled “For Stuart’s Mum” and I really enjoyed writing that one. Stuart had specifically given me instructions of what I could and couldn’t write about, so I of course wrote about everything he told me not to! This time he hasn’t really given me any instructions, although I’m sure I can think of things that he wouldn’t like me to write about, but I could anyway 🙂
First thing first, I would like to post some photos that divers have specifically sent me of them and Stuart. Normally the emails say, “Stuart was so awesome… Loved diving with Stu… Can’t wait to dive with Stewart again.” And then there is the attached photo. Like this one….
Or in the photo below.
I happen to love the photo above. These are two of the four “Parrotheads” as they call themselves. A lovely family that went diving with us and the two kids were certified by Stuart. As you can see by the photo, they obviously didn’t like each other 🙂
I can’t remember if it was this family, or another family that went diving with us, but I’m pretty sure that after this photo was taken, the little Parrothead on the right said to his mom “Can I get that photo printed so I can hang it on the wall in my room?” It was so sweet. Stuart puts up this hard exterior, he’s this macho London boy, but then when you aren’t looking he is making kissy faces at Roger (the dog, not the manager of Island Water World…). Or whenever there are kids that are learning to dive, I most often ask Stuart to teach them. Teaching kids to dive isn’t always easy. The actual diving is easy, it is everything else. Kids are normally super at ease in the water, they have no past to have developed any fear of drowning or breathing in water. As adults we have 30, 40, 50 years experience breathing in through our noses and dealing with the constraints of gravity. Kids don’t, so the skills are really easy to get through. But… there a lot of safety aspects that need to be put across (without scaring them). Like the proper ascent rate, no decompression time, and making sure that you check your air frequently. Stuart has this perfect balance.
Also, when he has students that are younger he starts saying “Dude” and “Chick,” which I find really endearing.
“So, Dude, when are you coming to get your junior advanced open water, then, eh?”
“Go on, Chick, use those muscles to get back on the boat!”
Well, so far, none of this is really going to get me in trouble with Stuart (which isn’t really very fun for any of us, is it?). I could write about the fact that he changed his Facebook profile to “in a relationship.” But I shouldn’t really, because it is inappropriate to talk about your employees love life in a blog. So, I won’t write that.
A big accomplishment for Stuart is the fact that he has recently become an Advanced Nitrox Instructor with IANTD. It wasn’t easy for Stuart, because (bless the little soldier) he isn’t very good at maths. He is great at lots of other things, but Math isn’t his strong suit, and the Advanced Nitrox Instructor course involves quite a bit of Maths. Stuart was determined though, and we spent a lot of time together so that he was able to pass the final exam. That is a great thing though, because it means that when he encounters a student that also isn’t very good at maths, he will be able to explain it in a way that makes sense.
At any rate, I don’t think that this blog will get me in too much trouble, and I won’t tell him I wrote it this time. Let’s see how long it takes him to hear about it on the grapevine… If his mom still reads the blog, then it probably won’t take too long.
(Sally wrote this blog 🙂 )