Liberty Wreck

This morning we were up and breakfasted, ready to go with German efficiency. Today Aimi carries on her course under the tutelage of Ricardo, the German owner of the dive resort. I’m off to the local wreck, USAT Liberty with the chubby ozzy and a local guide.

It’s a bit disconcerting not assembling your own gear, but all checked over we stride into the water. Fins on, goggles down and off we go, following the slope of the sand down into the gloom. I say gloom because according to the guide its unusually poor visibility today. We don’t have far to go, soon enough the shadowy bow of the ship looms above us. 

Not long after getting going, I brushed some fern looking seaweed or soft coral. It gave me a small stinging rash for my incompetence. I had 1 less weight on my belt but still I was sinking too much. But here I’m wearing a short legged and sleeved wetsuit which is supposedly adding bouyancy? I guess it just takes a couple dives to get settled into some new gear.

We followed our guide (I never got his name) around the wreck checking out all sorts of bits sticking off in different directions. Its been in the water so long that life has coated it so thoroughly its hard to tell what you are looking at. The bow was easy enough, some sort of mast or pole, some railings here and there. I was expecting a ship wreck to be more ship shaped, understanding it wouldn’t be in ship-shape condition. Nevertheless it was very interesting and I’m excited to start my course.

After a surface interval of about an hour, we went for our second dive. This was at the Tulamben Drop Off. Again, a beach entry and a short swim led us to a vertical rock wall where lots of life had made a home. 

Very quickly, and magically, our guide located a red… thingy. It was tucked up under a rock formation in a deep crevice. I’ve no idea how he spotted it. Maybe he knows it lives there? Anyway, it was a red thing with hairy bits inside its mouth(?) but most interestingly, it had thin blue lips that were pulsing electric blue. It was incredible. He also located a box fish, one of my favourites, but it disappeared under a rock before I could get a good photo of the little critter.

Just as we were heading back we passed over a huge fish, probably about the size and shape of a rugby ball. I thought it looked like an oversized puffer fish, but being a nautical noob, I assumed I was mistaken. That was until I spotted our guide making the hand signal for puffer fish, and a big one. It was certainly the biggest one I’ve seen yet.

After 2 dives I was absolutely shagged. Returning to the dive shop and restaurant, Aimi was just about to order. I asked her to order me a chicken burger and then ran off for a quick shower. That chicken burger hit the spot and filled me right up. I was sleepy after, and Aimi might have been too, but she was back into the pool for more skills work. I would have stayed and watched, but I didn’t want to put her off. I spent the afternoon writing, sorting out a bit of work (can’t fully ignore it) and listening to my audiobook until Aimi was done.

We were both knackered but chose to walk along the road a bit this evening. Being in and out of the water makes me feel a bit wobbly and disoriented so some nice flat pavement pounding felt good. We chose to eat at a restaurant called Slice n Brew. It looked to specialise in pizza so we ordered 1 between us and then a few tapas plates. Tapas, being the small Spanish plates of food maybe 2 mouthfuls in size. When they came out, they were more like the size of a small meal each! I was delighted, and they tasted great, but then realised just how much we had to eat… 

Challenge accepted.