What started off as a few stories of fun in the office grew into the team building staff of Mega Adventure embarking on a diving trip to Tioman Island for a quick weekend break and bonding session. Joy Tang would often sit in the office and share stories about her adventures which often lead back to her experiences underwater. It was always a source of enjoyment for us, but no other member of the team had been diving before so the conversation often came back to something we all had in common. That all changed with the introduction of a new member of our team, Shaun Moo. As is often the case in our team, he had a huge appetite for adventure but also shared a passion for diving. We were left with no other choice to join the conversations and get some experience ourselves.
Once the interest in learning had registered with Joy and Shaun, they jumped at the opportunity to get us booked in at the earliest opportunity. Both of them had had awesome experiences with Blue Reef Scuba in the past, so they were the obvious choice.
First up, we needed to register for our trip and had a decision to make - live on board and dive from the boat or stay on Tioman Island and then make the trip out to sea every morning. Joy and Shaun, had experience of both and although both have their plus points; we decided on the live on board option. The thought of the whole weekend living together, eating together and diving together was the perfect way for us to bond as a team even further.
Once we had registered, we were given our PADI Open Water Dive Course Manual. It was at that point (looking at the thickness of the book) that we realised we had some work to do. Joy and Shaun, obviously found this point amusing as they were already qualified and knew that joining us on the boat as leisure divers, their time commitment was going to be much less.
Off we went with our books under our arms, having signed up to the trip which included a classroom theory session followed by 2 pool sessions to ensure our skills were sufficient to take us into the South China Sea. Our study commenced and before we knew it, a week had passed and we were sat in the classroom at Blue Reef Scuba ready for our lesson. We were instructed by Irvin, a very friendly guy who immediately put our minds at rest. His delivery of the information we needed was spot on and we all made it through the session and theory test without a hitch (one or two questions to review our answers on but nothing to ring any alarm bells).
It was then two weeks between our theory session and the practical sessions in the pool. We approached this with caution as we weren’t sure that our newly acquired knowledge had stuck - luckily for us we were welcomed by 3 instructors for the 6 of us in the class. This meant plenty of one on one time and lot’s of opportunity to practice the various different skills required of us. We worked our way through the confined water training and emerged unscathed.
The skills we learned are there to ensure that you can take care of yourself and assist your buddy in the water should there be a problem. A mammoth session in the pool meant we were able to complete all our training. This really boosted our morale and gave us great confidence going into the weekend. Once again credit goes to the Blue Reef Scuba team and Asha in particular, as he was the one leading the session and made it so much fun.
Friday arrived and the excitement in the office was evident from the team's arrival in the office. We were all carrying our ‘weekend bags’ ready for our trip away, and it was much to our surprise that we had all listened carefully to the instructions of ‘pack light’. Mira from our team is infamous for being extremely ‘prepared’ although she will probably kill us for writing this in our blog.
We met the coach at the Blue Reef Scuba office and began our journey to Mersing, Malaysia. We were sharing the coach with other divers booked on the live on board (LOB) as well as those that had chosen to stay on Tioman Island. There were one or two nervous faces but once we were greeted by the team of Instructors and Divemasters who would be taking care of us over the weekend and refining our newly honed Scuba skills; we were able to relax. The journey went without a hitch and the border crossing was smoother than expected. Before we knew it, we were dropping off those staying on Tioman and at our home for the weekend the MV Shark Safari
The MV Shark Safari
The boat was ideal and we had everything we needed, a well stocked fridge, comfortable lounge area, comfortable sleeping area and very friendly boatmen to ensure our comfort during the trip. We settled into our rooms and called it a night, we all wanted to ensure we’d had as much sleep as possible prior to our first dive in the morning....