Fun Fund Activity: Scuba Diving!

Me and a caribeean reef shark in the Bahamas - Dec 2007

One thing you probably don’t know about me, because I haven’t really talked about it a lot in this blog, is that I’m a Divemaster. I’ve been diving for the last 14 years (I started when I was 15, I’ll let you do the math).

Diving is one of those activities that I rarely get to do because it is prohibitively expensive, but that I absolutely love. Love. Love. Love. Love.

If I could spend the rest of my life with water all around me (and not die) I probably would.

The last time that I went diving was July of 2008 – two months before I started this blog. I went diving in the Upper Penninsula of Michigan. It was absolutely freezing cold – and I loved it. In three days we got 12 dives in and I couldn’t have been happier with life.

Every year I go to Ventura, California for a conference in January. Every year I go to this conference I think “Man, I sure want to dive the Channel Islands while I’m here” – and every year I don’t do it, but promise myself that I will the next. Last year I couldn’t do it even if I wanted to. I was in such a sad financial state January of 2008 that I could barely pay for my rental car that was getting reimbursed.

Me in the Upper Penninsula July 2008. Yes that IS a toilet. =)

However this year is a completely different story. Not only can I afford to pay for myself to go to the conference (and get reimbursed, of course!), but I’ve intentionally not been spending my fun fund money because I am GOING to dive this year. It also turns out that the day I can dive is also my dad’s birthday – so I’m planning on asking him if he wants to be my dive buddy for his birthday present. The total cost is $120/person. Which would be $240 total + tip + some rental gear. All in all I imagine that it will cost me around $300, if my dad can make it. Bonus points though because we can stay on the ship the night before (don’t have to pay for a hotel!). Currently I have $288 in my “fun fund”. I’ll likely get another $100 before finals week is over.

If my dad can’t go with me (I’ll discuss it with him over Christmas when I have more of an idea of my financial state), I’ll definitely still go by myself. I have the money saved, the desire, and the time. So why the heck not?!

For $120 we’ll get: 4 dives with air, breakfast, lunch, and a bed to sleep in the night before departure

It is really quite a good deal!

I’m soooooooooo excited that 2010 I will FINALLY dive the Channel Islands. I have been telling myself that “I should do it” since the first time I went to this conference – in 2003! That’s 7 long years of waiting. I’m so excited to get back into the water – even if that water is a cold 60F!

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22 Responses to Fun Fund Activity: Scuba Diving!

  1. That is great! I’m glad you will be able to go this year, make sure to get some more pictures. That first picture with the shark is AMAZING!! Kind of scary haha.

    Have fun! Tell us about it.

  2. Jessie says:

    that’s fantastic news!!! It sounds like a completely reasonable price though (not that i have ever dived before)… I hope you have a blast!

  3. Carrie says:

    Whoa! That is so cool!! I think you are soooo brave. I tried to scuba dive once when I studied abroad in Europe and was the ONLY person in our group that couldn’t go under. I just couldn’t get myself to breathe under water – it FREAKED me out!!! So yeah, you’re way braver than me! So cool! 🙂

    • SS4BC says:

      Awww… it isn’t for everyone. A lot of getting under the water is just relaxing and taking deep breaths. Once you get below 10 feet it is MUCH easier. =)

  4. Ann says:

    This is so exciting! I’ve never dived but I’ve snorkeled a bit and would love to try! $120 sounds like an amazing deal to fulfiill such a great personal goal.

    • SS4BC says:

      If you enjoy snorkeling, you will most likely LOVE diving. I always just get frustrated when I snorkel because I can’t go touch things or see what is under a rock… =)

  5. psychsarah says:

    So glad to hear that you get to do what you love! Like Carrie, I could not handle diving. I managed in the pool while we were learning (just barely) but when it came to the open water dives, I just couldn’t deal-it was too stressful for me. DH loves it though-I told him he has to stop picking such expensive hobbies! 😉

    That aside, it is so satisfying to be able to engage in the activities you love and have the money to pay for them. We bought a subscription to our local professional theatre this year, and I’m loving it. We paid for it our of our entertainment fund, and it’s so exciting knowing that we have 6 date nights planned and paid for! Have a fantastic time on your dives 🙂

    • SS4BC says:

      Yeah the open water dives can be VERY stressful for new divers. It is easy to get caught up in your head and start to stress out. If your DH ever needs a buddy while you explore other things, give me a call. 😉

      I love that you have a subscription to the theatre! I dearly, dearly, dearly love the theatre, but only go every other year or so. One of my “life goals” when I’m out of debt is to be able to get season tickets to a theatre (as well as season tickets to a professional hockey team and an MLB team).

  6. Serendipity says:

    How fun does this sound? I can’t wait to hear more about your adventures.

    P.S Totally digging your blog right now. 😉

  7. notmymother says:

    This is exactly what it’s about, spending your money on stuff you LOVE. How exciting and wonderful.

    I’ve never dived, but my DH did an introductory one when we went to the Great Barrier Reef on our honeymoon. Originally I didn’t even want to go out at all, I was afraid of all sorts of things. But he talked me through them and I snorkeled around and it was wonderful. He LOVED the dive and I can see him wanting to get his certificates. Next time maybe I’ll have a go too 🙂

  8. Nick Bostic says:

    If you’re like most DM’s I know, you probably have excess (not in our minds though) gear, so I have to question the statement “it is prohibitively expensive” given that most air fills can be had for less than $10. Regardless, here’s what I’d do:
    Take your site stats to the dive operator and offer to write a post or series of posts about your experience, highlighting them of course. If you were in my neck of the woods, I would definitely discount prices if not just give it away for free. It never hurts to ask.
    Have a great time, some of my favorite dives were with my dad before he passed, so get them in!

    • SS4BC says:

      Here is WHY it is prohibitively expensive for me:

      * I don’t live near any dive sites – so for me to dive I have to travel – and that means meals, airfare, transportation costs and hotels. The closest dive spot to me is the UP – that trip cost me around $400. That isn’t something that I can do every week or month – or even year really.

      I own all my own gear, so that isn’t the sticking point (and you’re right, probably more than I need).

      That’s a great idea about getting some discount with the dive operator. I may do that for the trip in January. Thanks for the suggestion! =)

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  10. What a great gift for your dad! And some nice father daughter time 🙂

  11. Revanche says:

    How FUN! I’ll admit to discovering that my fear of water is much more extreme than I thought, sadly discovered that when I went snorkeling in Hawaii. I guess that means scuba won’t be on my list of things to do, but if I can get out of my head [ahhh I sound like Darth Vader! I can’t talk to anyone!] the view underwater is pretty amazing.

  12. Dive Flag says:

    Love the picture of you on the toilet. Lots of really good wrecks off the channel islands from all different conflicts can be very exciting.

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