Scuba didivng in Ios
Scuba diving was too good for words…….but I’ll try to put it in words.
It was good right from the start because the instructors were our friends and we’ve known them for about 5 months.
They are Jason and Kate and they were awesome instructors. We first met them in our Greek class and started talking, we found out they owned a diving school and they were in Crete for the winter. They first told us some safety instructions and how you know the difference between a good dive school which will keep you safe or a dive school that doesn’t take as much care.
One of the tips they gave us about knowing a good dive school is looking at the equipment before you sign up. If the equipment is all sandy then go to another dive school. Or if they don’t have a spare breathing tube go to another dive school.
We learnt lots of instructions like simple instructions for many sports – such as listening to your teacher and learning how to be safe. We learnt a few hand signals that had special meanings because we couldn’t speak underwater. Some of the hand signals were:
A thumbs up meant ‘Go up’
Thumbs down means ‘I want to go deeper’
A circle with your fingers means ‘ok’
A palm out moving like a fish means ‘fish’
Hand on top of hand and wiggling your thumbs means ‘turtle’
Hands doing a snapping movement means an ‘eel’
Thumbs together with fingers waving means ‘octopus’
We learnt: how to breathe with a regulator and how to be safe with a regulator under water, how to take it out and put it back in and then blow out if something was wrong or if you had to spit.
You could even cough, sneeze or vomit in the regulator and then press a button and the regulator would clear out for you if you weren’t trained to blow it out yourself. They said it was best not to vomit in the regulator.
The final rule was to have fun and the most dangerous thing about it was not getting hit by the bus when you’re walking across the road to the beach.
Their dive school has won an award as the best in Greece and the third best in the world because they are so good at safety, do a lot to care for the marine environment and they are such good teachers.
The funnest thing about it was we got to swim through hoops and throw an underwater frisbee.
We saw lots of fish and these spongy things – I think they were natural sea sponges. I even saw some moving coral which Kate later told me was a live coral.
You can actually see some of our underwater photos on you tube if you press here
This afternoon our friends kept a free day for us and took us on their own speed boat which is the fastest boat on the island and took us out to a wreck. It was very very fast and when we were at the wreck we anchored and then jumped off the boat and had a little snorkel. We saw fish and more fish and a little bit of the wreck. The wreck was wrecked 40 years ago when a cargo cement ship was going to the port. It rounded a corner but rounded it too soon and they ended up on the rocks.
The front of the ship got broken in half and split up everywhere and the hull was what we saw. The people on the boat did not get killed – they just went to the rocks and spent the night on them and walked to the main town in the morning. Two years later an almost identical boat carrying cement also got wrecked on the other side of the island.
On the way back Jason taught us what he had to do if someone fell overboard. He told mum to throw out a floaty and we were going pretty fast. Then Jason tuned the boat so quickly that the inside of the boat went on its side and almost felt like it was going in the water but the pressure kept us in. Later Jason told us that we didn’t even need to hold on cause we turned so fast and the pressure would hold us in like when you swing a bucket of water. My dad says this is called centrifugal force.
We got the floaty back pretty quickly and that’s what we would do if someone fell in.
Deefer is their Siberian husky dog with pale blue eyes that lives with Jason and Kate on their boat. He has been on ferries, planes, boats, quad bikes, buses, motorbikes and all kind of things like that. Even on a jet ski. He has even got his own doggles which are special goggles that he wears on anything that goes fast. If he goes to a snow area his pale grey fur goes really really dark which is like opposite to a suntan and probably protects him from the cold in some kind of dog way.
We actually just watched a movie called ‘8 Below’ with some Siberian huskies and it is an amazing movie. When watching the movie I also realised that when the dogs were on their own that was the made up part of the story – the rest of the story was true because when the storm came in and they evacuated they didn’t know what the dogs were doing cause no one was there. It’s an awesome movie and I really recommend it. I would love to get a husky but huskies don’t like to be alone for more than two hours so that wouldn’t work for us because we are at school or work for much longer and couldn’t hang out with it. They like to live with company or in a pack.
We came to Ios to go diving at Far Out resort with a diving school called Meltemi. We met the diving instructors from our Greek class in the winter in Agios Nikolaos. They had their boat at the marina near our house and we became friends. They are from the UK and they gave up their jobs in banks to start up a dive schools and live on a Sail boat.
The diving was an amazing experience. I loved seeing how the equipment worked and seeing all the fishes and sea plants in the water. We learnt how to dive and be safe in the water. We learnt that if equipment at diving schools is all messy in a pile and sandy then you should find a different school. If they say that you don’t need permission from your parents then you shouldn’t go with them either.
Underwater you can’t talk as you know, so we learnt some hand signals – if you put your thumbs up it means you want to go up to the surface and thumbs down means you want to go deeper but you must have an Instructor with you. A circle with your thumb and finger like an ok means all is good.
I was with Katherine and Kalika, Toby was with Jason and my mum was with James. Most people had to wear heavy belts to make them sink further but I didn’t have to wear a belt because the weights were inside my pack. The oxygen was very dry but it was clean healthy air. It made our throat dry and we needed to drink water straight away after we got out of the water.
In the water we swam through hoops and touched tyres, chased each other and played underwater frisbee. We stayed for about an hour or so under water but it did get a bit cold after a while.
The instructors, Katherine, Jason and James were very patient and calm and very nice people. They obviously love what they are doing.
In the afternoon about 3 o’clock Jason and Lynne (who works for them and is doing her dive instructor course) took us out to see a wreck. We snorkelled above it and it looked very beautiful. The colour of the water was crystal blue. One night about 40 yrs ago there was a concrete cargo ship delivering some concrete to Ios – it was aiming for the port but missed and landed on some rocks. The boat split apart and the people basically walked off onto the rocks and didn’t get hurt. They walked into the main town in the morning and told them they lost their ship. About two years later almost an a identical ship carrying concrete also was shipwrecked on the other side of the island and no one got hurt then as well.
When we were diving there were black sponges in the water and what happens when people get them – they drain the water out and let them dry and then use them as sponges.
It was a very exciting day and Katherine and Jason said we could come back and get a job with them in seven years time.
Scuba diving was awesome. We went scuba diving cause it was one of my birthday presents from mama and baba. My favouries thing about it was swimming through the hoops and wearing the tanks and jacket. They were very heavy but they weren’t heavy in the water. You can make the jacket into a sort of life jacket by pressing a button and there is also a button for deflating it when you want to dive deeper.
We went diving with our diving instructor friends Kate and Jason and their helper James. We played underwater frisbee. In the water we saw lots and lots of fish and I saw some natural sea sponges. It was hard breathing but I got the hang of it pretty easy.
When I’m older I would love to be in a dive school. Katherine and Jason said when I’m 18 I can come and work for them. It was the best experience in my life and I want to say a thousand thank yous to them.
2 thoughts on “Diving with Meltemi Diving school in Ios”
Thank you for such a brilliant account of our day… wish everyone listened so well. Hurry back to Ios and see us again soon.
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