How to confuse a coastguard… PJ has scanned his identity card, his health card and driving license and laminated the lot into a single card for use on any occasion. The only flaw in this cunning plan was that as a result the coastguard thought there were three Peter Jackson’s on board! One of the Peters entertained us further by dropping a tank into the harbour when he should have been putting it into the boat.
This wasn’t the only equipment cock-up of the day. Last week Dan got fined Dhs 10 for turning up without a dive bag. This week he found a bag but neglected to put his BCD in it. Cathy brought all her gear along for the dive but only some of it was attached to her body when she went over the side. A slight but crucial deficiency in the fin department. In all fairness, I should add that this was repeated later in the day by some guy whose name escapes me for some reason.
Oh yes the diving: We started out on the Car Barge because we haven’t done that for a long time. This wreck has suffered because of the dredging for the Palm Islands. The whole boat (and the sea bed around it) is covered in silt which has killed all the marine life attached to the wreck. This seems to have impacted further up the food chain because fish were a bit sparse although far from non-existent. The tug that towing the barge is down there somewhere but the markers have gone and we couldn’t find it. The viz was a bit murky as you’d expect but could have been a lot worse.
For the second dive we took advantage of flat calm seas and opened the throttles to go to Karen’s Dhow, 20 km to the North. This was much better with all sizes of barracuda, yellow snappers, emperor snappers, tuna, jacks and much else.
It has been pointed out to me that I forgot to mention the dolphins. To rectify this some pictures (taken not far from the Car Barge) are attached. Not as exciting as lumps of brass I know but hey – you can’t have everything.
Ian Hussey and Dive Club writers.