Finally getting around to updating the blog with the important news:
My wife and I got officially certified as Advanced Open Water SCUBA divers right at the end of July. We haven’t been able to go visit anything other than the local lake, but it truly is a whole new world and experience, and I am quite enamored with it. The amount of stuff I had to learn was daunting, and I hadn’t had that much study since college. But it was one of those things where I really wanted to make sure I got it, because not understanding something could mean literal injury and/or death. There were written tests, then pool swims, and then finally the dives out at the local lake to get our Open Water Certification, and then additional study and dives to get our Advanced Open Water certification. Our “local lake” was Beaver Lake, Arkansas. We are certified for conditions “equal to, or better” than what we did. Which means I can dive in pretty much any visibility, because, especially on our first dive, visibility was awful. However, we had a ton of fun, and when not doing things directly involving training, we saw a bunch of fish, mostly sunfish, perch, and a bass. There was a platform, boat, car, and many other things intentionally sunk in the area to be a ‘dive park’ for scuba divers.
Right after returning home with our AOW certification, I booked a trip to the Caribbean, because I found out it is surprisingly cheap, and it’s renowned for its scuba diving. Which is the polar opposite of the Midwest United States. That said, we are also planning a trip to Mermet Springs, IL, before autumn settles in because we hear it is a great diving spot that has paddlefish, very large catfish, a sunken 747 and a bunch of other fun stuff.
If you ever have the chance or opportunity to learn how to dive, I highly recommend it. It’s all but impossible to truly put into words the experience of it. Even just swimming around in a pool is something else.