Diving could be whole lot of fun!
This trip I happened to meet lots of interesting people along the way, made new contacts and of course, had a really great time in Tioman:)
With a heart full of excitement, I started my trip at 0515 hrs on the 6th of May 2012, when I stepped out of my house, flagged a cab (no other public transport except taxi) to Golden Mile Complex to get my bus tickets to Mersing which leaves at 0630hrs.
It was a relatively comfortable journey to Mersing except that we had to make so many stops in between such as the immigration customs and lunch break that kinda pissed me off, but yeah, after four hours, we arrived at Mersing an hour before the our intended ferry schedule.
Though tired and shagged out after the long bus ride, I started chatting with a backpacker from Holland who have been traveling around Asia for close to two months and we eventually became room mates after an hour of chatting:)
1400hrs, we arrived at Salang bay with splashes of rain welcoming us (how nice) and at the back of my mind, I was thinking… Shit, how am I gonna dive if the rain persist?!
Finally, after 2 hours of persistent waiting for the rain to stop and cups after cups of teh terik, we headed to Salang Beach Resort to check into our room:)
The day started out really wet at 0900hrs in the morning with strong wind and pouring rain as I walked towards BnJ dive centre to start my open water course with them… it was really sucky because my instructor came to me telling me that I had to wait for another couple before we start the course at 1130… slowly, time went by, 1230…1330…1430… nobody appeared and my instructor decided to not wait (after so long) and got me started on the theory part first… so yeah, I started my theory chpt 1 and 2 on the first day before the couple finally arrived at 1530…. how nice…
Finally, after going through some theory questions and teaching us how to set up our BCD, regulators, safety precautions and hand signs we finally got to step into the shallow waters to start our first confined water lesson… spend nearly an hour in the water before we ended the day by watching the video for chapt 3:)
looking forward to our next confined water dive, we started out by doing some theory questions and watched video 4 & 5 before we break for lunch and back to the dive school to set up our diving gears and headed for the shallow waters again;) boy!! it was great fun! we were taught stuff like clearing our mask underwater, removing and putting our mask and regulators back underwater, controlled descent, emergency ascend, and so on and so forth… I’m glad we all handled it well and the instructor decided to bring us for a short dive round the jetty which we saw stingrays, snapper, clown fish… bla bla bla…
Judgement day!! today we started out a little earlier then normal, we, started planning our dives with our instructor at 0845 and we left for the boat at 0915 to our dive spot!
0945hrs! Now, After 3 days of intense theory and confined underwater practise, its now the time to show what we’ve learnt down and under!! 18m under water, we dived as if we were professional divers, enjoying the beautiful corals and creatures underwater, experiencing our first underwater dive…. it was nothing but beautiful… After 50 min in the water, we had to descend and move on to the next destination, but midway, we stopped by for lunch prepared by the staff of BnJ and a short swim before heading to dive site 2:)
After completing our dives, we headed back to BnJ around 1600hrs, washed and kept our diving equipments and prepared for our quiz prior to the theory exams… honestly, I feel that this is much tougher then diving… but well, I’m glad we all cleared the papers and now, I’m finally a certified open water diver!!
Still on day 5, with some money left, I decided to head back for a good shower and then do a little shopping for souvenirs before I met my room mate aka “dice” and a group of friends I met along the way for a good bbq dinner and booze!!!
Though I really missed people really dear to me in Singapore, I started to really miss the simplicity, stress free and cheap food & booze in Tioman… with a heavy heart, I did my final packing, had a quick drink with my room mate who decided to stay for another couple of days and left for the jetty at 1120 for my supposed ferry at 1130 which only came at 1330…. so people going to Tioman, do not trust the ferry time, it’ll screw your trip if you trust it! but I was really glad, I finally arrived in Mersing about 1600 and my bus which I suppose to board set 1500 was still waiting for me:) well, apparently I was the only person on board the 50 over pax bus!! hahaha!!!
so yeah, I’m now back in Singapore safe and sound and I’m really glad that I’ve made this trip to Tioman so abruptly!
Anyhow, to all my friends I’ve met in Tioman from Holland, Finland, Canada, Australia, Germany and England, you guys rock!! Happy backpacking!!