CPE… the last test this year

December 4th, 2017

Last week I took the Cambridge Proficiency Test, the whole package (English in use, Writing, Listening, Speaking). The result should come in around December 10th which is refreshingly quick. I’m not unduly worried but it won’t be a perfect score this time, definitely not.

Still, for anyone out there on a reasonably good level in English should take up this challenge. You can do it!

The pain of moving…

December 4th, 2017

across continents. Moving to another continent at the end of the month and besides being scared shitless, there’s so much to do when you need to clean out your apartment. So much to throw away…. because there is so much that accrues over time. I found old guitar cables, not used for 15 years. They definitely need to go. And since I’m boarding the plane with just three pieces of luggage, I can’t afford to bring almost anything. Shipping is quite costly.

But then again, so much memories are buried in all that stuff.

From OWSI to SI…

November 15th, 2017

… whereas SI means specialty instructor and I’ve made that up, I don’t think it’s an official acronym.

However, it’s only a small step and does not take much time or effort. Plus I think teaching specialties is more intriguing than the mainstream courses.

The next step is actually teaching and certifying but given my work life and the changes coming up, I don’t think I will have much time to teach people scuba diving. More’s the pity!

IE over… I’ve done it!

October 17th, 2017

You wouldn’t believe it…. I certainly don’t.

Herzlichen Glückwunsch an alle neuen PADI Instruktoren aus der PADI Instructor Examination in Bern an diesem Wochenende!…

Posted by PADI Pros – Europe on Sonntag, 15. Oktober 2017

Actually, it wasn’t too hard. We didn’t do anything we hadn’t practiced before. But still…. a test is a test is a test and therefor you can fail.

Colour me relieved.

OWSI course completed… IE next

September 20th, 2017

Hard on the heels of the Divemaster and the Assistant Instructor program, I completed the OWSI course last weekend.

All in all quite demanding but also fun and you can learn tons of good things.

Sad note: The IE that was scheduled for this weekend was cancelled because there are not enough candidates. The next date is mid-October so somehow I have to make sure I don’t forget anything until then.

Keep your fingers crossed for me.

Finally a good tracks layout…

August 25th, 2017

The Tomy tracks are a great toy. Not only for kids, also for parents and grandparents. And with all the available parts you can create some really astonishing layouts.

One of the properties of a well-planned layout is the direction in which the trains can run. Sometimes accidentally and sometimes on purpose, tracks limit trains running in just one direction.

This one is not and it uses all the special tracks parts that we have at the moment: crossroads, switches, the bridge:

If this doesn’t sound like much too you, try building some tracks for yourself and you’ll be surprised.

PADI Assistant Instructor – done and dusted

August 2nd, 2017

While still doing the PADI Divemaster internship, I started and recently finished the PADI Assistant Instructor course. The certification card should be on its way.

Whereas the Divemaster has a lot of practical aspects, the next step in the PADI career focuses on teaching, teaching techniques, structuring lessons and applied lessons in confined water and open water.

First time supervising an open water lesson was pretty stressful. All of a sudden you have to deal with things such as bottom topography and current, which you don’t really have to take into consideration in a pool.

One of the most painful lessons I learned was the aspect of control – even if you have an assistant, you need to constantly monitor everyone around you, even the assistant – unless you know him/her pretty well and you make a good team.

I have to say, I really enjoyed the first dive *after* the course because after weeks and weeks of tasks, homework, assignments and such I finally got the chance to enjoy a quiet, no-pressure dive again. Felt good…

(Edit on 2017/08/25: corrected three typos)

Summer Problems…

August 2nd, 2017

Guess what kind of shoes I’ve been wearing this summer so far…

And don’t look at my weirdly shaped little toes… which you probably can’t unsee now.

 

PADI Divemaster – did it

July 18th, 2017

What can I say… this year seems to progress as planned…. I finished the divemaster course yesterday and signed the necessary documents which means I’m am a PADI Divemaster. Apparently there is no mandatory PADI Divemaster tattoo.

To think that I only started diving less than two years ago… it’s been a busy and interesting time. Next step: Assistant Instructor.

PADI Briefing template

July 10th, 2017

If you ever have to do a dive briefing, feel free to use the below template.

In some spots, you will need to fill in the details of the dive location e.g. phone number of the local hospital whereas in other spots you can delete whatever is not necessary (you do obviously not enter a dive spot from a boat AND walking from the beach).

When you have adapted the template to your diving spot, you will have covered all the major points of a dive briefing.

If you use the template for several dive spots, it will give your briefings a consistent look-and-feel (listen-and-feel, if you prefer) which makes it easier on the divers regularly attending your dives.

Feel free to add contents or delete what is not necessary. Use a map if you have one. Make one if you don’t. Remember to keep briefings short and to the point. Make it interesting but keep it relevant.

Briefing_Template

Update: Fixed a typo