I was scheduled to work on one of our Richelieu Rock liveaboard trips shortly after heading back home to Singapore for a visa run so I hopped off a plane at Phuket International Airport on Monday morning and immediately took a taxi to Khao Lak.
Having been travelling for the last 2 years I’m often asked if I miss home; if I miss spending time with family & childhood friends. Of course I do… But I also miss the ocean when I’m not there. Home is where the heart is and my heart is in the ocean.
So, despite the tiredness that comes with travelling, I was ecstatic to put my sea legs back on to prepare the boat and enjoy the scenery.
This trip was a little different for me from the other trips I’ve done, as my fellow colleague and friend, Jen, pointed out. I’d taken off my instructor cap and had 4 amazing, experienced divers to guide. David, the ever interesting author; Lorenzo, the man with the coolest moustache; Ophelia, the recently certified and raw vegetable loving divemaster; and last but not least, the ever cheerful and fun-loving Shai. Not to mention all the other fun guests on the boat who made this trip what it was.
On day one we were diving Koh Stork, one of our Surin Island sites, and to everyone’s delight most of us were lucky enough to spot octopus on the very first dive! My group had the joy of observing 3 of them! I also managed to impress my divers (and myself) by spotting a miniscule Blue Dragon (Pteraeolidia ianthina) nudibranch.
The dives on that day continued to impress with more sightings of nudibranches, lobsters and barracudas. And after all the diving we didn’t let a little bit of rain stop us from heading to the beach for a beach clean up and to play a great game of frisbee.
We ended the night with the whole boat playing Pictionary and having a lot of laughs.
Richelieu Rock Trip – Days 2
On day 2 we made an early start to one of Thailand’s most famous divesites; Richelieu Rock and we had this amazing divesite to ourselves. The visibility was great, we had sightings of a pair cuttlefish and enjoyed the sheer landscape view of purple soft corals that cover Richelieu.
After two dives at Richelieu (we could have easily enjoyed more) we moved on to Tachai Pinnacle. This time the visibility was at least 25m and there was minimal current. We had a nice relaxing dive and were even greeted by a few barracudas in the middle of the dive.
On our last day, we had 2 dives at Koh Bon and had a chilled trip back to mainland finishing off the beer that Lorenzo and David bought and were nice enough to share with everyone on the boat.
All in all, it’s great to be back, to my home away from home – the ocean and thank you to everyone on this trip for making it as incredible as it was.