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    by Published on 11-18-2012 08:11 PM
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    The final part of my PADI Open Water diver certification was Dives 3 & 4. Yesterday, Dives 1 & 2 were done in Terrell, Texas. Today's took place in Glen Rose, Texas.

    The purpose of this documentation is to provide information to consider so your experience will go smoothly, and that is why I opt to share a number of details, including minor ones:

    I awoke at 8 a.m. so I'd have an hour to get myself going before my drive to Glen Rose. As soon as the alarm sounded, I jumped up but wow did I feel like heck. I could see through the closed blinds that it wasn't bright outside, which meant it would feel colder than yesterday's sunny day. My body ached, my neck bothered me, my sinuses seemed a little restricted... more than likely the result of cold water dives the day before. I reset the timer on the alarm, and went back to sleep for 45 minutes. I felt better, and had just enough time to ...
    by Published on 11-17-2012 08:42 PM
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    To receive my PADI SCUBA certification, I have to complete four "open water" dives with a qualified instructor. This weekend is halfway over, and I was able to get two of the four done today before we ran out of daylight. Here's the link to the planning blog: http://www.reefaddicts.com/entry.php...-certification

    Yesterday (Friday), I went to We B Divin' to pick up my gear. This includes the BCD, weights, 5mm wetsuit and 5mm Hooded Vest. Because the dive shop doesn't have any Large wetsuits at this time, I used the LL (large-long) and an XL hooded vest. The purpose of both is to insulate me from the colder water in our lakes during November. I picked up two air tanks, and checked both for their O-rings. One was fine while the other looked pretty rough. I asked for a spare O-ring since it ...
    by Published on 11-04-2012 11:41 AM
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    With a heavy schedule carrying multiple responsibilities, it has literally taken me years to get SCUBA certification, or should I say the necessary training to become qualified to dive. When I designed the logo for my company, a diver was included in the artwork as a constant reminder of what I wanted to do. It was a personal goal. No matter how I tried to map out my schedule, I never seemed to have the time to take my classes. About a year ago, due to a friend's reminder, I purchased a Groupon for classes, and even with the four month period before expiration, I couldn't mesh my schedule accordingly. Customer orders needed filling, traveling for speaking engagements or MACNA promotion, as well as club business / events, my reef tank's issues... ...
    by Published on 11-02-2012 11:50 PM
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    Two weeks ago, I paid for my upcoming classes to get PADI Open Water SCUBA Certification. I received my educational packet, which included my main workbook, a diver's log, and a computer workbook. Between work, I studied, answered the quizzes that appeared after each subheading, and completed the chapter review test.

    I sat down with a bowl of popcorn to watch both DVDs that rounded out the pre-class education, and soaked up all I could. The videos were funny at times, and explained quite a number of important factors. The video quality could have been better; I was wanting HD but this is what you get currently.

    My class is small. There are four students, and one instructor as well as his assistant. Because of the small group, ...
    by Published on 10-23-2012 12:25 AM
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    After my initial excitement of buying new diving gear passed, I had to deal with something unpleasant. The owner of the dive shop took it upon himself to glue a sticker promoting his shop on the back window of my vehicle. That was a mistake on his part, and I'll never spend a dollar in his shop again. Moving on, I've scheduled Open Water Diver Certification classes for November. The first weekend will be three days of education: Friday evening from 6pm to 10pm, then Saturday from 9am to 6pm, followed by the same hours on Sunday. Two weeks later, we'll drive to a lake in Glen Rose for dives on Saturday and Sunday.

    This is PADI instruction, which seems to be the most widely accepted dive instruction organization. For two weeks, I'll be studying ...
    by Published on 10-17-2012 03:49 PM
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    Hi Dennis. Mandarins need their food, that's a fact. You can also use various products to replenish that food, and there are proactive ways like my Mandarin Diner article explains. Have you read it yet? http://www.melevsreef.com/mandarin_diner.html

    The best way to grow more pods is to feed your tank phytoplankton regularly. If you don't do this now, pods will be less prominent. Shaking out the cheatomorpha is a good move, and yes your return pump can send them into the tank undamaged. They just get washed up in the flow. I'd suggest you do ...
    by Published on 10-15-2012 05:43 PM
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    Today, I finally took the official plunge into the SCUBA world. I've been circling the idea for the past six years, but knew it was an expensive hobby. I already have one of those as it is. Still, I've read articles about our beautiful reefs, read stories by my diving friends, and seen pictures that made me envious. National Geographic and IMAX movies whetted my appetite to see some of these places in person, and opportunities arose repeatedly where I had to decline because I wasn't certified yet. When I was applying for health insurance years ago, they asked me about a number of possible high-risk sports I might be involved in, including SCUBA. My answer was "no to all of the above," but that they were giving me some great ideas. hehe The SCUBA diver on the Melev's Reef branding wasn't just a look, it was a personal goal. ...

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