written by Ocean student, Philip Yang
June 1, 2018
I’m going to be honest with you. I’ve really enjoyed these past couple days, but at the same time, I’ve never felt so challenged. Getting PADI certified isn’t as easy as they all (the rest of my crewmates and friends in training) make it out to seem. Experiencing the beauty of the Caribbean and bonding with the rest of the crew and staff on the program couldn’t be replicated without also enduring the few hiccups we’ve encountered already, whether it be scheduling miscommunications and a minor boat maintenance issue. Although one might say that these setbacks would rain on our spirit, it’s quite the contrary. Finding the shred of joy in these experiences has brought us all closer. Thank God everyone here has a good sense of humor!
Through the open water certification in the morning, sailing and scuba diving in the afternoon, and learning how to clean and manage the ship along the way, I have developed a liking to my new friends. I have never really thought of myself as the person to open up so quickly. It usually takes me a week or two, but this time it took about four days. I wouldn’t replace any one of them for another because each person brings that “something” that just can’t be substituted for on this team.
Seeing beautiful fish and learning how to moor a catamaran is better with company and I am just thankful that I have the best. Oh, and the captain and the rest of the staff is pretty jolly too! To all the parents reading this: rest assured, this is the experience of a lifetime and you’ve made the right choice.
The greatest challenge during the program was staying entertained during the quarantine period. Not being able to leave your boat and not having a phone, which was a crutch against boredom, it was difficult at first to stay entertained.