Thursday, July 24, 2008

We lost our anchor but reconnected with a friend!

Joe took the kids out to the boat again on Tuesday evening. Since the lake we have our boat on doesn't have many beaches, we just anchor out in the middle of one of the many coves. This time, though, the anchor decided to stay on the bottom of the lake. It wouldn't come up, and after 45 minutes of trying Joe just untied it and told the kids that maybe he and a friend will get their SCUBA gear and go down to get it out later. The kids were very excited to tell me all about it when they got home and that they were going to watch Daddy SCUBA dive to retrieve the anchor and rope.

Since they were so enthralled with SCUBA diving, I started talking with them about our SCUBA instructors, their many dangerous diving adventures and explorations, and that they discovered the deepest water-filled sink hole (with its own cave system) in the world, called Zacaton, located in Mexico. I had already told the kids that one of our SCUBA instructors, Ann Kristovich, once pulled out one of my teeth--true (she's also an oral surgeon!) and that our other instructor, Jim Bowden, looks like Santa Claus--also true. See for yourself!
I told the kids our instructors are no ordinary divers--they both hold world records for deep diving. Jim dove to 925 ft., and Ann went to 554 ft. Most recreational divers usually dive at around 30-60 feet, and anything much below 200 feet is considered very dangerous! Anyway, after reading most of the information on their website aloud to the kids yesterday, Jim Bowden and Ann Kristovich are now extremely famous people in our house...although Jim just claims to be a big frog in a small pond (not much world-wide exposure on cave divers!).

If I hadn't married Joe, he most likely would have been on this team of crazy cave divers exploring in Zacaton. Before we got married, Joe took numerous technical, safety diving courses with them as well as an intense cave diving course in Florida. He was also one of Jim and Ann's assistants in their classes. Joe knew that I worried about him cave diving, however, and since he's a sensible kind of guy, he said he wouldn't cave dive anymore--just for me. Phew! (You'd be scared too if your husband hung around somebody who's crazy enough to dive to 925 ft and swims through dams on a breath hold!)

Anyway, after I emailed Jim to let him know how much our kids loved learning all about his adventures, he sent a nice note back with a couple of pictures--the Santa Claus one posted above, and this one.At first we couldn't tell if it was Joe (on the right) or if it was Jim. We're now sure it has to be Jim...but in the same cave that Joe dove years ago. Oooooh, cave diving is scary stuff!

Now, after Joe gets all of his SCUBA gear ready, I have some homeschool science experiments--on light and pressure--he can do underwater for the kids! Joe would love to have a good excuse to get back in the water!

So even though we lost an anchor, it was good to catch up with an old friend! There's always a silver lining in everything, right?

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