Ever wondered what a normal day looks like to a dive instructor? Well, wonder no more as we take you through a day in the life of a Purple Dive PADI Scuba Instructor...
It's still a little cold as I make my way to work. The sun is still rising, so, wrapped in a hoody, I ride the short journey on my scooter along the stunning beachside road. It is a somewhat unstable surface, and I am continually dodging large potholes and avoiding the dogs and cockerels that call Nusa Penida home.
Arriving at work at around 7 am, I sit with a coffee and chat with my colleagues. We start to set up for the day ahead by preparing the wetsuits and booties for the guests, while the tanks and equipment are taken to the boat by the crew. As the guests arrive, the dive centre fills with people getting ready by the poolside and chatting over coffee.
My students arrive for day 2 of their Open Water course – and their first-ever ocean dive! We head down to the boat, their sense of anticipation and excitement is contagious! After the short but beautiful boat ride to the dive site, we start to put on the gear for the dive. As we sink below the water, I see the eyes of my students light up as they lay their first sight on this new underwater world. It's always a privilege to be one who introduces them to this amazing experience.
Newbie divers are usually a bit clumsy on the first dive, as a dive instructor part of my job is to help them to relax and find their balance. We glide along practising some skills as we go. Turtles serenely drift along and nibble on the coral as we pass. On the surface interval, we chat about the dive; what they saw, and how they felt and I give them hints and tips.
After soaking up some sun and enjoying a coffee and biscuits, we get ready for dive 2. Back down we go… under the water its an escape from the busyness of life, where there is quiet with only the sounds of your bubbles. Gliding over the corals in the drift feeling a sense of absolute weightlessness is a feeling like no other. I help them with their buoyancy, it's a technique which only comes with practice. Ahead of us, we are lucky enough to see giant figures gliding around….Manta rays are one of the gifts that the waters of Nusa Penida offer. My students look on in awe of these giant but elegant animals.
Having completed their first two dives we return to the dive centre, have a quick shower and settle down for some lunch.
We sit by the dive pool, which looks down on the coastline of Nusa Penida and across to the silhouette of Bali in the distance. We chat, recounting the experience together. When we’re finished, we look through the fish ID books to identify what we saw. We fill in their log books, then confirm the schedule for the next day, their last two dives of the course.
I have a couple of hours to wash my gear and chat with guests and staff before the afternoon session starts. Today, I have a refresher. At 3pm my guest arrives. We sit down and discuss their diving past and previous experiences. I find our where they have dived, when they had their last dive and what their diving experience is. We set to work, starting with some theory. We have a chat about the theory they remember and the bits they have forgotten. I have them assemble their gear, prompting them when needed and then we're ready to jump in the pool. We go through some skills together underwater and I help them to regain their confidence.
Once we’ve done all the skills and my guest is happy, we climb out of the pool and go through any questions they have. I see my guests off and clear up all the equipment from the pool. We put some music on the speaker and the staff get to preparing the equipment for the next day, making sure all divers have all their equipment bagged and ready to go. The workday is done! I sit down and relax in the afternoon sun with the other staff. After a bit, I get back on my scooter and make my way back along the coastal road to home ready for the next day.