Becoming a dive instructor in Khao Lak

(I’d written this post a couple weeks ago just before the IE but wasn’t able to post it until now. Added some stuff but left it mostly the same. Might write more soon!)

A couple weeks ago, I found myself sitting in a small classroom at Sea Dragon Dive Center with a bunch of random dudes from around the world.

Guido was my buddy from whom I had first met on Lembongan almost a year ago. We signed up for this same IDC by pure coincidence, and were both stunned when we found out. I’d met Chris briefly on one of my earlier trips to Khao Lak in 2016. On the first day of the IDC, I met Holger and Nico for the first time, as well as our Course Director Camille.

Over the next few days, we spent mornings in the classroom sitting through endless powerpoint slides, then afternoons in the pool doings skills and confined water presentations. It was tough, but I really enjoyed it. It didn’t take long before we were up to all sorts of shenanigans. We had an amazing group and I’m so happy to have gone through the IDC with these awesome people.

Guido – I don’t know why your ‘thing’ was ‘the Patagonian who’s apparently always up to some shady shit’ haha. Thanks for working hard together with me on exams and pool before the IDC even began! I’m really thankful that somehow we ended up doing the same IDC together, especially since you had to come over from the “dark side”. Thank you for being a great buddy and looking out for me.

Nico – My cool French brother, the token smoker in the group who is always dropping things! I’ve learnt a lot from all of your wise questions to Camille. You seemed serious at first but you’re actually fucking hilarious. Thank you for being there for me when I was drunk that night haha.

Holger – The gentle German. You work the hardest among us, coming in to class early every morning and working at the shop after class. You’re so sweet and thoughtful too. Thank you for being so reliable and always making sure that we have everything that we need.

Chris – Subtitles not included. Nobody knew you were such a prankster until all our fin straps had been unfastened. Thanks for pushing me in the pool, asshole 😛 And pulling on my tank, and unclipping my fin straps, and splashing me with your fins… But seriously, thanks for all the fun.

Camille – You are an amazing Course Director. Your enthusiasm has made learning even dry material enjoyable. Choosing to do my IDC with you is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Thank you for sending me to the hospital and staying with me for hours even though we already had such a long day and you had to travel the next day. Thank you for your care and concern. Words can’t express how much I appreciate it. I’ll see you soon.

I’m really proud of all of us. This was an amazing experience and I will miss you guys so much.

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