Here’s a blog post of my scuba diving experience with Thresher Shark Divers Malapascua. As I mentioned in my previous post, I asked my Facebook friends about the best diving shop to learn my PADI Open Water Dive Course and one friend mentioned TSD Malapascua. I searched for the diving shop and told this to my generous reader about the company.
Arrival on the island – first day
I arrived on the island, we went straight to the shop and talked to the staff there. Got excited filling up the forms, answering health-related questions if I am capable to dive and my information. I received my Open Water Diver Manual and the next day I could start my class. The diving course usually last 4-5 days but you can take the 3-day option if you’re on a limited time. You can even study the theory class at home before getting into action through an online portal which you can have access with the video. I chose the 4-5 days diving on the island since I don’t want to stress myself on reading the materials and watching the video. Thank goodness, my time was flexible.
Thresher Shark Divers Malapascua, this is it!
Dive #1 – 2nd day
At 7 AM, I woke up and had my breakfast as I need to meet with my instructor at 8:30 AM every day. I was just watching videos and reviewing answers in my manual. I had a hard time since I was worried about my work. Received a call from the client for the end of the project which was a good thing for me since I needed to concentrate on my diving. In my mind, I could find another project after the diving course. In the afternoon, I had a one-on-one session with my dive instructor, Max, and answered some quizzes. After answering the quizzes, it was the start of my diving session.
I had no photos during the entire session of the diving as I need to familiarize all the theories and assembling my gears before diving. So many things to remember, to practice, to apply and to demonstrate on what I learned from the Knowledge Development and Confined Water Dives. For the first dive, we went to the Lighthouse Wreck at 7.4-meter depth.
I felt weird about myself because I had my nervous attacks getting into the water same thing happened in Dauin. I wasn’t like this during my first Discover Scuba Diving on Mactan Island. What I realized is that on Mactan Island, it was pure fun and play dive which it wasn’t so technical at that time.
Exercises and Things to See
We’ve done two exercises during the first dive and these are: (1) Partially flooded mask and clear, (2) Regulator Recovery. These exercises made me panic the $#!+ out of me as I don’t want my mask to be flooded with water. Of course, I was afraid I could not see underwater and my eyes for sure gets hurt. With the regulator recovery, I had to remove the regulator from my mouth so I needed to save my breath in case it was accidentally unattached from my mouth. But then these are the skills I needed to master and I made it.
We found clown fishes, lizard fish, striped eel catfish, juvenile sweet lips, wart slug, squids, trumpet fish (gray) and the shipwreck. I got stung by the jellyfish during the 10-minute floating test.
Diving practices continue – 3rd day
We made two dives on this day, in the morning and in the afternoon near the cemetery. It was for the preparation for dive #2. This time I got more comfortable already. Several exercises I’ve done in here. I did the 200-yard swimming lap while snorkeling.
Dive #2 – 4th day
These were the exercises I did: (1) oral inflation of the surface, (2) full mask clear, (3) establishing neutral buoyancy, (4) out of air as donor and receiver, (5) out of air ascent, (6) at the surface cramp removal, (7) snorkel regulator exchange, (8) weight removal and replace, (9) BCD removal and replace and (10) SMB inflation. The dive site was at lap light at 10.6-meter depth.
We found clown fishes, skunk anemone fish, lionfish, pipe fish, two spot snapper, striped eel catfish, butterfly fish, sergeant major moon wrasse and rock mover wrasse.
Dive #3 – 4th day
Accomplished exercises were: (1) CESA, (2) mask removal and replacement, and (3) hover using oral inflator. Location of the dive site still at lap light at 17-meter depth.
We found nudibranchs Chromodoris, clingfishes, shrimp fishes, manila puffer, and clownfishes.
Dive #4 – 5th day
We went to Chocolate Island diving at 15-meter depth and was able to learn a new skill in using a compass. I got a warning about the illegal fishing happening near the island by throwing bombs which it was scary for me. I even heard a loud boom underwater.
The two exercises I learned were: (1) surface compass swim and (2) reciprocal compass swim underwater. We saw octopus, filefish, nudibranchs, dragonet, wrasse, squat shrimp, manila puffer, and porcupine fish.
And I’m done with the Open Water Dive Course, answered all the final quizzes in the afternoon.
Dive #5 – 6th day
Super excited for Dive #5 because I’ve been waiting for this, to see the Thresher Sharks. Will blog more of this on the next blog post about the experience. At Monad Shoal, I was able to dive at 22.8-meter depth, my first adventure dive.
Two exercises were: (1) color/effect of depth on colors and (2) compared depth gauges. Of course, the highlight of this dive was to see the thresher sharks.
The pricing of this course cost for PHP 19,500.
Max, for doing an awesome job, for answering my questions when I am in doubt.
Frankie, for the underwater photos, because I really requested to Max if I could have images for my blog.
Mark U., for this wonderful gift of experience and for encouraging me to take the course. ^__^
I really appreciate the one-on-one session with a dive instructor because it gives me the chance to ask a lot of questions since I have the instructor by myself. It made me forced to concentrate, I had a feeling that I could be a lazy student and maybe just copy some answers from a fellow student which is a bad idea.
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Roxanne is an aspiring digital nomad. A virtual assistant since October 2009. She is a hobbyist blogger, photographer and travels a lot.