Archive for October, 2023

Pottery #5: glaze

Ya, we’re glazing, finally! With so many colors (Amaco), the fun part begins.

It’s the week 5 of our six weeks session. The teacher suggests the app Clay Lab to keep truck of our pieces.

Glazing in pottery, I feel is a part of science and part of art: two shades mixing up will turn into totally different colors, when you apply differently – like this one: the top is obsidian under white, and the bottom under grey. The result is so drastic.

Sax’s color is truer

I glazed three pieces: my flower and mini sauce dish. My turtle is missing a leg and pumpkin was broken into pieces. This pumpkin is made by a classmate who’s not coming back – I’m practicing on it.

Leave a Comment

4 strokes of luck

the pretty moon this morning

I often use ‘front crawl’ as the breaststroke. Why? I’ve no idea. Actually, front crawl is freestyle lol

My bad.

Don’t know what I’m talking about.

Butterfly at its peak, is faster than free … but freestyle is an endurance style that can go miles on end.

So, once for all (myself mainly), the four style of strokes of swimming are:

  1. freestyle – also known as front crawl
  2. butterfly stroke
  3. breaststroke –
  4. backstroke

Leave a Comment

Speciality diving course: flash lights

Section 6 of Advanced Adventurer is Nigh & Limited Visibility Diving, my second specialty course. Home read would be enough but SSI makes you to go to the hone hour long class and pay.

The content can’t really fill the hour, so we talked about other things.


I saw this ad for a small cruise going to Galapagos, when the diver only has a snorkeler.

“It’s a free dive,” the master said. Then he looked closer, and said, “I would fail her: wearing snorkeler is fine but it shouldn’t be in the mouth …”

Ha, one of the misleading advertisements.

Galápagos Islands is part of Ecuador, population 33,000 (2020), in the eastern Pacific Ocean, around the equator. It’s about 5 hour fly from Miami. The normal cruises that offer diving, is during the port time, using the land diving operators.

Diving from the boat, is liveaboard that offered overnight stay, can get in 5 dives a day (of course you can do less …)

Leave a Comment

Speciality course: navigation

After Open Water Diver, comes SSI’s continuing education: Advanced Adventurer. They call it specialty course. The reading material for this bundle is 160 pages. It has 12 sections, with overview and quiz but no exam, at the end.

Section 5 Navigation, done in two hours, review and practice of how to use compass. We went outside to practice, counting out steps. A little silly tho… who’d count their kicks in the water?

The shop sells writing pad too – the slates. One of the slates is Saekodive, made by a Taiwan company. Wondering is it as good as Sherwood and Genesis brands?

Not sure how useful a slate can be. I’ve no desire to buy one at the moment.

There was another lesson going on prior to ours. It has only one student. On the table, are many gadgets and the tv screen says Communication

Underwater communication devices
Surface communication devices

Leave a Comment

Oh well …

A management company posted a sign

Please be advised locks must be removed daily or they will be removed if left on.

Thank you.

A common practice at the health clubs as well, that you can not lock a locker overnight / to yourself. (Some health clubs do rent them out, monthly or annually, when and where you can keep a locker to yourself.) But a week later, someone wrote FU … I take it means fuck you?

… actually I didn’t get it at first glance bec I’ve two mates on my tennis team with Fu as their last name … one’s primary school teacher.


Leave a Comment

The graduate

So came the graduation. We all passed, just with varying degrees: one got snorkeling only, I got the scuba diver, Ralph got his instructor’s certificate after 200 dives under his belt – congratulations.

It’s a dive social, coincides with the halloween party. Some mates baked a cake and cookies, pizza ordered, I brought two bottles red wine – no one touched it except me lol. … no one drinks wine in a dive bar … ha ha ha.

Meeting other divers from previous classes is great – you need a buddy to dive after all. If you’ve no one to dive with, you’ll have to hire a dive master. Unless you’re on a private boat.

As door prizes, I won the very good looking t shirt for wearing my face mask.


Leave a Comment

Pottery #4: molding

The fourth lesson is moulding (predominately used by the Brit -:).

There are two kinds of molding: slump (the inside) and hump (outside).

I used one of the potteries made by my kid -:)

We got our glazes … to share! Next week, we will learn how to glaze.

Leave a Comment

A fishing trip @ shipwrecks

Went to lunch with my tennis buddies at Hooks. Afterward, one of them offered to take us fishing.

It’s a beautiful day, with calm water under a clear blue skies. Hook’s doesn’t have a deck hand, and the water is several feet below the normal waterline on the shore. The buddy said, it’s the global warming … which makes in and out of the sailing boat a little difficult.

The shipwrecks … are usually sit at the bottom of the water. But these two have been there for a while. The owner(s) really should have towed them away.

The two buddies went out on Sunday and caught many fish … So they took us to the same spot again. Although I saw many fish jumping out of the water, however, I’ve no luck to lure one onto my hook. One of them comfort me, by saying, “… that’s why it’s called fishing, not catching.” ha ha ha

We did see a manatee -:)


It’s fishing 🎣 not catching [得意]

昨天他们钓到好的鱼 俺跃跃欲试
然后… 就没有然后了 (虽然鱼诱非常漂亮 – 顺走当耳环吧 [调皮])

人家解释 所以是钓鱼而不是捉鱼 [大哭]

全球暖化下的小民生活,  水位下降 上岸难

Leave a Comment

2nd checkout dive @ Devil’s Den

The scuba dive: the second checkout dive is at Devil’s Den, which concludes our training sessions.

The venue: Devil’s Den is overhyped.

Under ‘no camera’ rule, & 1st time use the dive phone case. 

The cave is tiny.

Now is the off season and I found it to be crowded at time. The dive master said during the season, it was much more crowded.
The iconic photo is all there is – which I saw long before the diving. So when I knew our checkout dive would be there, I was excited.

… more pix at Yelp, Google Maps

Through two sections of stairs (one is very narrow), that leads you down to the cave, you see the iconic photo.

The cave is privately owned. It was formed by a karst window. The human and animal bones found in the cave were of about the same age, 13,000 years ago. The spring water is 72° year around. On a cold day, the  white moist rises through the opening on the ground, hence the name.

The place is popular as a training site for divers. The snorkelers are mostly tourists for photo ops – the language I heard were distinctively foreign.

The diving experience: The terrain is rocky which makes it interesting but with too many divers, it feels uncomfortable. I bruised my legs from the rockers. What I’m looking for in open water diving is wide opened space, leisurely pace, and colorful creatures. Hopefully I’ll accomplish them on my own dive.

We met up at the shop at 7:30am, arrived at Devil’s Den at 10am. The next 50 minutes is spent on paperworks, signatures, orientation, waiting for the last mate to arrive … There are a lot of papers to be signed – so do leave enough time … “why not done this online?” They replied, online could not do all …

Before the dive, we spent considerable time in the pool – because we didn’t get the last pool time on Thursday.

One of our mates is bit of timid who always needed extra TLC. Didn’t get out of the pool till 2:15. A little snack break, then heading to the Den at 3:10. Done two dives by 5 and went to the first meal of the day at 5:40. It’s a long day.

The two dives 2:58 in the water

  1. 3:34pm, 32′
  2. 4:33pm, 34′,

这个巢穴由喀斯特窗口形成.发现的人类和动物骨头的年龄大致相同, 约有13,000年的历史.

大妈一意孤行 偷偷照了两张 – 小师傅耐心等了一下 不好意思再多照. 可惜了 好景
”小哥 俺就是想轻轻松松 游游泳 看看景 照照相 没想变职业…”
小哥当成耳边风 [大哭]

我们五人中 父子兵的爸爸最难教, 我们总是要等… 18岁的儿子学的最好 笔试💯… 考笔试时俺忘记坐在他旁边了 [呲牙]
俺开小差也是乘着他忙着教爸爸. 二把手也耐心 二个人轮流教爸爸 [强]



Leave a Comment

Oh boy … I finally passed

The final of the owd was administered after reviewing Section 6 by Ralph. Ed was taking notes on Ralph and grading him: I like how Ed runs his business, and SSI, so far.

On test: little old Irene failed because she should have reviewed but didn’t, and scored only 78% out of 50 questions, and SSI requires 80%. I get it. It’s your life on the line, dive or die -:)

We then went over the test. Should have practiced in the pool afterward, but it was too late, we  left early and will practice at the pool at Devil’s Den on Sunday.

P.S. So, the old little Irene studied overnight and went back to take it again the following day – it’s Test B – and passed with 92% – should be 96% because two questions she didn’t read closely … oh well … I embezzled the green pen. Ed went over the 4 mistakes I made – really appreciated it.

… I might have passed the first time, IF I didn’t point out that the grader left one mistake unaccounted, which made it 80%. Oh well … it’s me, old habit is hard to change.

Leave a Comment

Older Posts »