It started out alright. I watched the sun come up, and then hung around outside Le Dolce Vita waiting for it to open.
I managed to snaffle some of those glorious custard pastries to have with breakfast, and pre-ordered the stromboli to be picked up at lunch. We started with a quick static session so that Vincent managed his 2:45, and then had a lazy 50m warm-up DYN (Dynamic with fins – distance in a pool on a single breath with fins). I felt I could have smashed at least 75m in this state. The water was lovely, and I forewent the wetsuit for togs. I was then told off for performing a non-depth dynamic: I needed to be kicking the entire distance, not the kick and glide that I’m used to. I manage just over 60m. Then Kate let me try on her carbon fins. My ankles are in love and I have a serious case of fin envy – they are just so light! The only downside to the wearing fins is that they’re rubbing on some mozzie bites I managed to pick up yesterday. I looked at them last night and hoped they aren’t going to lead to anything more. I don’t know what made me think that, but the antihistamines are working (so far).
And then it all went downhill from there. It was another beautiful day out on the water, and we went back to sunset to try again. I was too stressed and therefore dived badly. I managed a 23m FIM (new PB), but I needed to do 20m+ CWT. I got to 18m before needed to turn, and then couldn’t get past 10m due to equalisation and losing my cool. I am still pretty upset about it, but there’s nothing I can do now. The moment we got back on the boat my calf cramped again, so I missed diving the Bounty. Which has just upset me even more.
The only upside was being kept company by a mad Frenchman from the Pyrenees who was also having issues equalising. Greg is a tattoo artist with some amazing ink. He is also a rock climber and spearo and we chatted about diving spots around Noumea – which he had done in January, and I had snorkelled some of the reserves in April. We watched some serious clouds build up over Lombok, but as we were told with certainty by the locals: it never rains in July.
I’m sitting here now watching it absolutely bucket down. We cancelled our “graduation dinner” as the roads are currently about a metre underwater, and the island has shut up shop. There are lightning strikes on Meno and the hill above us. It was magnificent to see the clouds roll in, and the sheet of water sweep across from Lombok. It started during yoga class, and has not abated in the 2 hours since. We’re sitting in front of the office, watching light fittings fill with water, the swimming pool overflow, and horse carts up to their seats in water. This storm is an absolute doozy. The island is floating away, but my room is on stilts, so that’s okay.