Perhentian Islands

We took an overnight bus ride from Langkawi to the Perhentian Islands on the east coast of Malaysia.  It was a double decker bus and we were seated directly above the driver (possibly the most dangerous place to sit?) but at least it had the best view.

After a bumpy boat ride we arrived at the island. Its off-season but a few tourists wandered the white sand beaches. It’s pretty relaxed, there’s only a few things to do: eat, sleep, party, snorkel, and scuba.

While I was here I decided to take my PADI, a 3-day scuba diving course. It’s one of the cheapest places in the world to get it!

Scuba diving is more of a mental challenge than a physical one. As long as you remember a few fundamentals you can avoid problems:

  1. Keep breathing, slowly and calmly
  2. Adjust your BCD – Buoyancy Control Device
  3. Stay with your buddy
  4. Keep checking your tank, and make sure you don’t run out of air!
  5. Ascend and descend slowly, and equalize often (clearing your ears)

Its a different world underwater. There’s no verbal communication; sign language is the only way to communicate with your fellow divers. Gliding around the coral in this silent world is unlike anything I’ve ever experienced.

I saw a moray eel (like Ursula’s sidekick from the Little Mermaid!) and a sea turtle, and lots of beautiful and colorful fish, but sadly no whale sharks! Oh well, next time. I’m also excited to try scuba in California, who wants to go with me?

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