Maldives Day 5
We woke around 9ish and felt absolutely drained. I’m sure I walked to the restaurant looking just like a zombie out of Shaun of the Dead!
I had more breakfast than usual, as I knew we had got a boat trip leaving at 10am. And wanted something in my stomach to chuck up if I did get sea sick.
When we finished we had a slow walk round to the taxi jetty via the sea bungalows. The staff checked us in and we sat and waited to be boarded.
The boat looked like something that was used in the ancient times, with a high roof and big open sides. At the front were two ladders that took you onto an upper deck. The upper deck had a barrier around that was no higher then 9inches. If you think I am going up there you have got to be joking.
We all boarded and we sat on the right, Charlie immediately got himself comfortable to go to sleep and shut his eyes. Sam just sat there, sun glasses on waiting for something to happen.
We set sail about 5 minutes later, and the sea was pretty calm. Bit of “uppy downy” motion but apart from that it was ok. The heat was pretty intense and my arm was being frazzled in the sun. I later discovered my neck managed to catch a bit of sun as well, but not where my camera strap sat.
We headed out for about 30 minutes. The sea was just beginning to turn that darker blue I had experienced at the end of the Jetty. In the distance you could see waves breaking, against what I could only guess as being small beaches. A couple of other islands were visible including a large ship or yacht docked at one of them. Veldhu was still there in the distance, with the sea bungalows stretching out into the sea.
One of the members of staff hit the roof, I think they were panicking as this was a Dolphin spotting trip. If no Dolphins were seen whilst on the trip, they would have to give us back 50% of our money.
A couple of Whistle’s were heard and there they were, 6 bottlenose dolphins leaping out of the water one after the other. Then there were more, about 9 in total.
They would appear, and then a couple of minutes later disappear. As though they were playing with us. Each time the captain of the boat would move the boat around so that the front of the boat would be the best viewing location.
Charlie was awake by this time and helped Sam to record there activity on the video camera. I got some nice clear shots on my camera of them jumping, as they came closer and closer to the boat. At one point they swam right underneath us.
The staff gave us all a bottle of water each, I had forgotten how thirsty I had been because of the Dolphin activity. Good job somebody remembered.
After about 30 minutes, the guy came round and asked if we were all ok as it was time to head back. We all took our seats and headed back to Velidhu.
It was fantastic to see the Dolphins so close up, I have seen them before in the sea at New Quay in Wales, but never so near. We could not only see them with there rows of sharp teeth but could also hear them squeaking and snorting. It was well worth the money.
When we got back to Velidhu it was time for some lunch and a drink. After lunch we headed back to the hut for a rest. I had a play on Sim City, time was creeping on. I got up for a wee and the room telephone rang. Sam answered it and it was Magnus from the dive school, I should have been there at 2pm for our taster dive.
I quickly got some swimwear on and headed down there. I hadn’t missed much as Magnus had done the first section in German, I managed to pick a lot of it up.
I put on my wetsuit up to my waist and then when it was my turn, I set and tested my air and suit. I connected my regulator and made sure I could breathe through it. We all went through the hand signals and we did a mock test to see what we needed to do to get rid of any water in the mask or if we lost our regulator.
Magnus told us to grab a quick shower to cool our wet suits down as it was still quite warm in the sun.
The second bit was finishing zipping up the wet suit, which was very difficult. Magnus’ assistant then helped me put my suit and tank on my back. This thing was heavy, we also had additional weight belts around our waste and I couldn’t help thinking that walking in this gear to the beach would not only prove difficult, but could be classed as exercise.
When we were all ready, we grabbed our masks and flippers and walked in line to the beach. We were told to inflate our jackets and once in a deep enough spot put our flippers on.
We then had to swim out backwards to where Magnus told us and stand up in the water. It was difficult standing up as the current kept taking my feet away. But he got us into a semi circle and explained about the mask!
First, spit into your mask and rub it around the mask. Then wash your mask in the water. We then had to demonstrate to Magnus about how to get rid of the water in the mask. I could do this bit fine.
The next section of the lesson involved taking the air out of our suit and lowering ourselves to knee level for the next section of the lesson.
I emptied the jacket and went down, breathing slowly in the regulator. As I was going down I kept swallowing and pinching my nose to relieve the pressure in my ears. Looking out of my mask at the others felt amazing. I was under the water and looking around. As Magnus carried on, my breathing became harder. It was like I was not taking enough air in. Magnus turned to me and gave me the OK sign, I shook my head and gave him the thumbs up to return to the surface.
When out of the water a wave managed to help me swallow some of the salt water. He asked if I was ok and I asked for a couple of minutes to get my breath back. When ready I emptied by jacket of air and went back down. My breathing was ok and Magnus attempted to carry on. Again a few minutes in and I just couldn’t get enough air into my lungs to cope with what I needed. I didn’t panic but I did attempt to hold my breath, which I got told off for. I just wanted to go back up to the surface, but I do understand now why that is wrong.
When I went back up Magnus’ assistant asked again if I was ok. I really wanted to do this but the air thing scared me a little. I was quite alright with the going underneath the water, I just couldn’t seem to get the air my body required.
To cut a long story short I decided that I wasn’t ready to do it. I wasn’t the only one. We headed back to the dive centre and removed all of our gear. I headed back to the hut to Sam and Charlie.
Surprisingly Sam was still awake, playing Sim City yet again and Charlie was fast asleep. Sam thought it would be a good idea to use the remainder of our time on the Kayak, so we woke Charlie up, put sun cream on and headed for the watersports centre.
Charlie sat in the kiddy chair, I sat at the back and Sam was at the front. We pushed out and started to head around to the front Jetty. Because neither of us knew how to row, we managed to get wet through. Plus because of the way Charlie was sat, every time I got into the motion of rowing my foot would move and I would squash Charlie’s leg.
In the end we went right around the island, it didn’t take long. We went past the sea defences weaving in and out of the rocks spotting the black finned sharks and sting rays. Plus thousands of crabs along the rocks, we then navigating around the sea bungalows and the sea deck. And eventually past the Sea Taxi Jetty back to the watersports centre. All in all we were out about 40 minutes.
By the time we got back to the hut, we grabbed a few bits and headed down to the beach. No snorkelling today just a bit of a mess around. We took the underwater camera so that we could get some shots of Charlie swimming.
Afterwards we headed back to our base, showered and changed ready for some dinner. By the time we got out of the hut it was already dark. We walked up to the reception area, before we got there Charlie’s Waiter friend from the bar greeted us and asked if we wanted drinks. We explained to him that we were going to have some food, feed the fish and be in there for a few beers afterwards.
The food in the restaurant was Chinese themed, some weird additions to the food we normally have but both Sam and I tried the Beef Stir Fry, Vegetable chop suey and the egg fried rice. There were a few other bits including deep fried crabs legs, which I did try but got the tiniest bit of meat off it.
After dinner we had another wander around the gift shop, Sam purchased a towel of all of the Maldivian Islands, bit of a souvenir. We then checked reception to see if there were any additions to the excursions. Some more had been added but these were for the snorkelling and night fishing, plus they were for when we left.
From there we went down to the fish feeding at the end of the jetty. They were already half way through this, but they asked Charlie if he wanted some of the fishy delights to throw in. Because of the fishy hands from the first time he had a go, he refused politely.
We then headed towards the bar to have a beer. Charlie’s friend was messing around trying to take Charlie’s iPod touch, and as usual Charlie wouldn’t let him have it. Nothing special was going off in the bar, but Sam was fascinated by the couples on the next table smoking strawberry tobacco from a bong.
We didn’t stay long and retired back to our quarters for about 11ish.