We went scuba diving today, yay!! And about time too! Belize is one of the premier dive destinations in the Caribbean…having the second longest barrier reef in the world after Australia. And I can’t believe it took me six months into our two-year tour to finally get out in the water. I kept signing up for trips and then cancelling at the last minute for random reasons. The most effective (and accurate) was usually the baby. Our CLO was probably starting to think I was lying about being certified at all. 😉

My husband got certified after we got down here, and I was certified back in Florida many moons ago. So it was awesome to be able to go on our first dive together! There were seven of us from the embassy, and we drove an hour from Belmopan to Belize City, boarded the dive boat at the dock and set out for a trip to Turneffe Atoll. Before we arrived at our destination, we stopped at Spanish Lookout Caye to pick up our dive gear from the dive shop.

We had a great time on both dives. It’d been almost 10 years since I went diving, and I probably should’ve taken the refresher course. But happily, my recently-certified husband was able to remind me of the finer points like the correct position of your weight belt and the fact that you have to hold your hose up vertically to deflate your BCD. Other than that, it was pretty much like riding a bike underwater.

And we saw some fun things…schools of creole wrasse, a trumpet fish, a spiny lobster, and couple lionfish, which our CLO promptly speared for lunch. She’s awesome like that. And we were harassed by a remora looking for someone to attach to for an easy meal.

Unfortunately, we did have a few reality checks. When I first jumped in, I got stung a few times by small jellyfish. It wasn’t that bad…I just thought the salt water was stinging where I’d scratched at this week’s round of bug bites. And on the second dive, my hubby was trying to take a picture of the cool trumpet fish and ended up getting stabbed on the top of the foot by some fire coral.

We were also going through our oxygen relatively quickly. On our first dive, my tank had a small leak, so I started out with 2600 PSI that should’ve been 3000, which shortened our dive time a tad. And then my hubby blew through his on the second dive, and we ended up surfacing with only 100 PSI left in his tank. But it all worked out for the better…we were the first ones to get back to the boat and dig into the fresh lionfish and conch ceviche!!

The trip ended back at Spanish Lookout Caye. Snacks and a late lunch were included in the cost, so we sat down for a little fried chicken, rice, coleslaw and pina coladas. Then it was back to Belize City. Not a bad way to spend a Saturday!

The dock in Belize City.

Our dive boat.

Our captain and dive guides.

Approaching the dive shop and resort on Spanish Lookout Caye.

Villas on the water.

The dive shop.

Dive tanks on the boat all ready to go.

Cutting into the conch.

Cleaning the lionfish.

Ceviche, yummy!

A couple snorkelers.