SCDC Dive Camp 2016 - Report
Holy Ghost writer – It’s another literary Marvel…
Getting Damp on Dive Camp – 18 Superhero’s and a Wonder Dog plunge the depths of physics, feasibility and sleeping in a sandy tent. Fighting crime and the forces of evil superhero’s from the four corners of Hong Kong converged faster than a speeding bullet on the Pier at Tso Wo Hang. Some bullets travel faster than others obviously. A huge mountain of dive, camping, BBQ, food and beer paraphernalia was assembled and at the designated signal of a wonky bat search-light Johns “Monster” boat appeared on the quay. With the strength of several super-human characters the boat was loaded in no time at all. One super hero was slightly worried some may have been straining and was sweating that his services and paper would be required, even before we set off.
But we launched on time and headed out. It was a bit windy and lumpy “out” so courageously we turned the boat at headed off to a sheltered and seldom visited spot. The evil lair of the killer clown (fish) and his urchin minions, otherwise known as Basalt Island. The DM declared ”have no fear, Belshaws here”, which made everyone nervous. The first dive was a test of navigation and thermal abilities. Some weaker hero’s had opted for a dry-suit in a balmy 25 degrees of water, others were impervious in 3mm of baggy neoprene. On the dive we saw octopus, three types of shrimp including bumblebee, grouper, brown trout, damsel etc. There was an epic battle many leagues under the sea as the killer clown attacked the hero’s. Bat Belshaw and bog man were bitten, but managed to escape. It was then back to the boat for –dinner, dinner, dinner, dinner, dinner, dinner time.
Dive two – Suitably recharged we went again. This time heading deep in an elaborate navigational pattern to confuse the villains and divers alike, some more than others. In the depths there was soft coral, some moluscy thing, an eel, and what was claimed to be a yellow whip coral fish thing. It looked like a bit of plastic to me. There were a few fish about in the shallows, but not much down in the dark. Tanks suitably drained we got back on the boat and headed for super hero island and the secret beach we have used for nearly every dive camp since dive camps began.
A series of trips and we were landed with our piles and other bodily ailments. A chap had lost his propeller and asked for our help. Always willing to assist, we said we might look in the morning, if we were not too ill/could be bothered. Erections were placed on flat areas, blowing took place on various beds and sleeping apparel was unfurled. A pit was dug, coals were lit and phone boxes appeared. In moments the beach was alive with hero’s. Batman, bat woman, cat woman, minion woman, burka woman, Super woman, wonder woman, Bat dog, imperial storm trooper, the incredible hulks, knight diver and bog roll man. Mr Dillon was the victim of an unfortunate laboratory experiment gone wrong, this had nothing to do with his super hero however he is just a victim. Luckily none of the special powers were required during the night and no rescue services were needed. The Barbecue began in earnest and whilst meat was gently cremated, beer and wine flowed and flowed.
It grew dark and the quality of the cooking was hidden and the beer helped disguise the carbonated cuisine. The music selection was varied. It was agreed that if your name was Chris, you should never be left in charge of the music. The band played on and the beer grew low and it was time for bed. This involved carrying an extra-ordinary amount of sand into the tent and sleeping bag, zipping the door with enough mosquitos for company, increasing humidity to a mild Turkish bath, finding the lumpiest bit of groundsheet to slide off any airbed and onto said ground sheet, then waking periodically in pain, numbness and hot sweats, despite the anesthetizing effects of the alcohol.
The waves lapped gently through the night and no-one washed away or washed in the morning. The sun rose, no alarming cock was required to crow, as a scene reminiscent of dawn of the dead was re-enacted with people shuffling and groaning towards their morning ablutions. The hulk who had been the victim of Laboatoire Garnier, looked the same in the before and after pictures. Breakfast was served, offered and refused. Tents were packed including the pop-up tents within a few hours. The pyramid of camp kit and rubbish was loaded to a launch and those unable to join the bears in the woods queued to violate the facilities on the boat. Luckily Bog roll man, who was no more than a finger tip away from being called into action, was required.
In a show of Samaritan humanity we decided to do a series of line sweeps and search for the missing propeller. We found a lot of other stuff and rubbish, but no propeller. I blame the bloke with the reel and the people in the middle. My end would not have missed anything. Interesting my end saw a fairly large whip tail ray and we had swam over the area minutes before. I still blame the bloke at the end. Exercise complete (a complete failure), we headed to Rocky Harbour for food. Those with super-human eyes will have noticed a brown trout in the write up, who flushed it?
Dinner, dinner, dinner , time was a selection of Chinese food. Beer was consumed and after a restive break we got back on the boat, via the ferry. Suitably drained and refreshed we headed back to the pier and our transport. The music was mysteriously louder than the beach, but thankfully only for a short period. People departed. Our trusty carriage was not very trusty and had to be towed to the garage, so some of us got home around 7pm after sorting things out… Grrr
A good weekend. Thanks to everyone for making the effort and making it an enjoyable trip. Until next time remember, crime never sleeps - be on your guard.
For more awesome photos, see the GALLERY