Friday, August 7, 2009

My Instructors

*Photos taken by my dad/sister*

I have had such a great experience, diving in Aceh with Rhi as my instructor.

Rhi is very nice, very kind, very helpful, very thoughtful & most of all, very gentle.

Thank You Rhi, for making these past dives to be one of the greatest moments of my life.

Rhi is now moving to Koh Lanta in Thailand, I wish her the best of luck!
till we meet again.....

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Aceh dive trip

Another diving journey with my family. This time it’s in……

Pulau Weh/Weh Island


We rode on a ferr y from Banda Aceh to Weh Island on Sunday, 19/7/09. I was really excited that day. My dad says its going to be a 45 minute ride so he's going to buy VIP tickets for him & my family for the ferry journey.In the VIP section of the ferry, there was AC, a TV so everyone can watch, with a drink and a type of snack for each person. When we reached Weh Island, we met this guy. He said that he was the driver to take my family to the resort we're staying.The resort where we're going to stay till Saturday, was called Lumba Lumba. Lumba-lumba means dolphin so the resort actually means Dolphin. When we arrived at Lumba Lumba we sorted everything out and got ready for a walk on the beach.After a walk on the beach we went to have dinner. We have to wait for quite a long time before the food come out but I didn't really care. The next day I woke up and got breakfast. Lumba Lumba doesn't have a restaurant so we have to go to the restaurant next door. After breakfast, my family & I got ready for our first dive in 6 months.Today, I met my instructor. Her name is Rhi Dobbie. I have a feeling we're going to have a wonderful time together, & we did. Let's start at....

Fun Fun, First day of diving in P. Weh

Day 1-Rubiah Sea Garden (RSG) SOUTH 20/7/09 -45 mins
Dive no. 1

We went to RSG by boat. While we were going to RSG, Rhi said that I'm going to do a back flip/back roll to get in the water, instead of doing a giant strike. Back flip is, when you sit at the edge of the boat with your equipment on, then, one hand holds your mask and regulator while your other hand holds your weight belt & then, in count of 3 you flip back. It might sound quite scary, but it's actually fun! When we reached RSG, my dad, my mum, my sister & some other people went in first.When it was mine & Rhi's turn, Rhi said that I should go in first. So here I go, doing a back flip, WHOOSH!!! In the water, I saw a Blackspotted Puffer, some Oriental Sweetlips, lots of Feather Starfish, quite a few Cleaner Wrasse & a few Moorish Idol. We also saw some of my favourite fish, there was the Longnose Butterflyfish, the Palette Surgeonfish/Dory, the Black Pyramid Butterflyfish & the False Clown Anemonefish. Rhi & I also saw Red Tooth Triggerfish & quite big Titan Triggerfish! There were also some Sea Stars, they were the Crown-of-Thorns Sea Star & some common Sea Stars.

Did you know that you have to watch out for Titan Triggerfish because they're more firce than the other Triggerfish?

Day 1-Gapang Beach LEFT 20/7/09 -49 mins
Dive no. 2

Phew! What a lunch! I hope I won't sink for this dive :) For this dive, Rhi & I are going to the beach infront of Lumba Lumba. Since there are 4 sides of the beach (left, middle, right & far right), Rhi & I are going to try the left side first. On the left side, we saw some Blackspotted Puffer, a Black-Blotched Porcupinefish, a few Oriental Sweetlips, lots of Feather Stars, lots of different kinds of Cleaner Wrasse, Trumpetfish & quite a few gruops of Razorfish. There was also some Clownfish; they were the False-Clownfish, Skunk Anemonefish & Clark's Anemonefish. This time, we saw some Orange-Lined Triggerfish instead of the other. When I saw the Orange-Lined Triggerfish, I was amazed by the colours, especially if you compared them with other Triggerfish. Rhi & I also saw lots of Clams, a VERY cute juv. Yellow Boxfish, another Crown-of-Thorns Starfish, more common Starfish & this fish, the Black-Saddled Toby which was adorable. At first, I thought the Black-Saddled Toby was a Puffer, but when I point at the fish, Rhi wrote on her waterproof board saying that it was a Toby!

2nd Day in P. Weh

Day 2-Gapang Beach MIDDLE 21/7/09 -49 mins
Dive no. 1

Today, Rhi & I are going for a turtle hunt!!!!Yay! I've never seen a turtle before so I'm really excited today. I really do hope we WILL find a turtle or two. While we were turtle hunting, we saw, a juv. Yellow Boxfish, quite a few Powder-Blue Surgeonfish, Long Nose Butterflyfish, lots of Bird Wrasse, Crescent Wrasse, a juv. Dotted Sweetlips, juv. Black Snapper, Lion Fish & this weird named fish called the Blue Blanquillo. After a while, Rhi bruoght me to the sand area for a bit. Before the dive, Rhi also said that we might find some rays, so I think that's why we're going in the sandy area. A few minutes later, I saw the corals again. Colours...Woohoo! While we were swimming around the corals again, we saw Yellow Snappers, Red Tooth Triggerfish, Bristly Hermit Crab, a juv. Bicolor Parrotfish & Clark's Anemonefish. Unfortunately, today we can't find any ray:( , but there's still a lot of dive sites that I haven't done. So I didn't really mind that much. After that, we went back to shore. While we went back, we saw baby Triggerfish hiding in rocks, they were the baby Red Tooth Triggerfish, Yellowtail Triggerfish & the Picasso Triggerfish.

Day 2-Selako Drift 21/7/09 -55 mins
Dive no. 2

Before this dive, Rhi told me that she can't be my instructor for the 2nd dive for today. Instead, someone else will take her place. The someone else will be Will Brown. He will be my instructor for this dive only, so I hope I will have a great time with him. Will & I did a drift dive in Selako Drift. A drift dive is when you follow/carried away by the current. While we were doing the drift dive, we saw a few Red Tooth Triggerfish, a Cushion Star ( I tried to draw it on Will's board but it turned out more like a squashed puffed star), a Painted Rock Lobster which was uder a coral, 1 or 2 Hermit Crabs, some Yellowstripe Snappers, Clark's Anemonefish, Maldives Anemonefish, some common Butterflyfish, some awesome Black-Backed Butterflyfish, 1 or 2 Emperor Angelfish, a few Striped Surgeonfish, a Moray Eel, Lined Butterflyfish, Threadfin Butterflyfish Orange-Lined Surgeonfish, lots of Cleaner Wrasse, a few Puffers & some other common fishes.

Day 3- RSG NORTH 22/7/09 -55 mins
Dive no. 1

Today Rhi is back to be my instructor. We are going to dive on the north side of RSG this time & I think it's gonna be great!!! On the north side of RSG, we saw some Anemonefishes, Singular Bannerfish, common Butterflyfishes, the Blue Blanquillo, Powder-Blue Surgeonfish, Trumpetfish, Bird Wrasse, a Blotched Porcupinefish, lots of Lizardfish, Goatfish, 1 or 2 Cushion Star, a coral crab- which was the Oshima's Porcelain Crab, some other common fishes & Triggerfishes; they were the Orange-Lined Triggerfish, Red Tooth Triggerfish & the Indian Triggerfish. When we were just going to the surface, guess what we saw??? Nudi Eggs!!! At first, I thought it was a pink tissue, but when I pointed it to Rhi, she wrote on her board & it said Nudi Eggs. I was so amazed that Nudi Eggs are beutiful.

Day 3- Gapang Beach RIGHT 22/7/09 -55 mins
Dive no. 2

Since Rhi & I haven't seen a ray or a turtle in the past few days, for this dive, we're going on a turtle & ray hunt! Yay! While we were on a turtle & ray hunt, we saw a Marbled Snake Eel, some Triggerfishes; they were the Orange-Lined Triggerfish, Picasso Triggerfish, the Red Tooth Triggerfish & the Indian Triggerfish, ther was the Lizardfish, Spotted Hawkfish, Bird Wrasse, Spotted Garden Eel, I also found a Mantis Shrimp (which was hiding under a coral), 1 or 2 Khul's Stingray (AWESOME) & an Anemone Crab. When we went back to shore, we also saw my sister (Mayang) doing her diving course with some other people & 1 or 2 Lion Fish.

Day 4 of Diving

Day 4- RSG NORTH 23/7/09 -56 mins Dive no.1

Today, Rhi & I are going to the north of RSG again because we loved it.
Here, at RSG (again) we saw, a Giant Sweetlip, Freckled Hawkfish, Blackeye Thicklip, Bird Wrasse, Tassled Scorpionfish, Longnose Butterflyfish (my fav), the White Collar Butterflyfish, Singular Bannerfish, Meyer's Butterflyfish, Dory, Longnose Tang, Honeycomb Rabbitfish, Chocolate Grouper (YUM :) , Peacock Grouper (Ooo), Blacktip Grouper (Aaaa...), Bridled Monocle Bream, Puffers, Slingjaw Wrasse, Black-Saddled Tobies, Lizardfish, Speckled SandPerch,Clarks Anemonefish, Varacose Wart Slug, Skunk Anemonefish & some other common fishes.

Day 4- Gapang Beach FAR RIGHT 23/7/09 -61 mins
Dive no.2

Rhi told me that usually she see's turtle infront of her longhouse, which is near a little point of this island. She says that we have a greater chance to find a turtle there, so that's where we're diving this afternoon.
While we were turtle hunting (again), we saw, a juv. Bicolor Parrotfish, Freckled Hawkfish, Bird Wrasse, some common Butterflyfish, Singular Bannerfish, Longnose Tang, Chocolate Grouper, Crescent-Tail Bigeye, Black-Saddled Toby, Lizardfish, 2 Khul's Stingray, adult Boxfish, Puffers, Pink Damselfish, Yellow Margin Moray, a school of juv. Catfish (about 30 of them), Spotted Garden Eel, Network Pipefish, some other common fishes & guess what??? We also saw a Sea Moth, a Slender Sea Moth!!!!!!!!!!!! Rhi told me that they're usually at 15+ metres below. At first I thought it was a juv. fish, I asked Rhi what it was & she wrote on her board saying that it was a Sea Moth (which really looked like a tiny squashed bird).

Last Diving Day in P. Weh

Last Day of Diving-Gapang Beach RIGHT 24/7/09 -58 mins
Dive no.1

Unfortunately, divers can't go on boats on Friday mornings. That's because of the fishermen's tradition : ( But at least we saw a few cool stuff. As of course, they're everything! They were the Emperor Angelfish, Crocodile Needlefish, Khul's Stingray, White Colar Butterflyfish, Immaculate Puffer, juv. Black Snapper, Semi-Adult Midnight Snapper, Picasso Triggerfish, Blackpatch Triggerfish, Titan Triggerfish, Indian Triggerfish, Razorfish, Peacock Grouper, Hexagon type Groupers, Goatfishes, Hermitcrabs, Crescent-Tail Bigeye, Tobies, Clark's Anemonefish, Red Tooth Triggerfish, some other common fishes & guess what? I found this Snake Eel swimming right under me. I pointed it at Rhi & she says that we're going to look in the fish book.
When we tried to find it in the book, there was nothing like the Snake Eel we saw, but Rhi thought that it was the Spotted Snake Eel, so I went with that.