Hi everyone as most of ye know my name is Martin Bowes, I’ve been diving since 2001 and spent 7 years with another sub aqua club in Dublin called true blue sub aqua where I done most of my training. I’m currently a leading diver since 2006, and hopefully will be successful in passing my Mon* next year. When I joined the club earlier this year, I didn’t know what to expect and was a little apprehensive of what type of people and club I was going to encounter. But after a full year of diving with the limerick sub aqua I found the club very well run and organised but yet with a relaxed and fun theme to the diving and also an excellent and well experienced bunch of people. Most of ye will know that I have recently been voted in as diving officer of limerick sub aqua and also to my surprise awarded the club member of the year. I have to admit that filling Brian O’Leary’s shoes will be virtually impossible because of his vast experience, knowledge, understanding and patience with the members of the club and also the huge amount of time he puts in behind the scenes that most people never see. All I can say is that I will do my very best to organise and run dives to the best of my ability and try to make them interesting, fun and try to cater for everyone’s diving needs. I look forward to working with the members of the committee and having a great diving season in the coming year.
Today’s dive in Portroe Quarry;
The day started off quite bright and sunny but with blustery winds blowing from the south west, so as usual the only dive site available was Portroe Quarry. I hope the trainees forgive me when I say this but we had what experienced divers would call “a jolly” (no trainees)! So myself, Brian and Mike Orth got to dive together. It was a leisurely start, as we got kitted up. The usual banter and crack was present and we made the arduous trundle down the ramp to the dive platform. After a quick buddy check, I was nominated to lead the dive, and with a few quick hand signals we were at the bottom of the quarry near the ramp at around 17m. I was having trouble equalising my right ear so I had to ascend a few metres to clear my ear, and join the two lads on the dive. Now just to remind ye, I was supposed to be leading the dive but found out very quickly leading these two guys was like leading geese out of a haggard! We all seemed to be going in different directions! We came to the edge of the drop-off and with an OK signal, down we went. With great surprise to my eyes, I saw Brian doing summer salutes down to about 35m gingerly followed by me. We had previously agreed to remain at a depth of 25m, so I saw Mr. O’Leary disappearing into the depths with the faint glow of a torch, looking back up at Mike at 20m I didn’t know who to follow. I decided on the safer bet of Mike and we waited until we saw Brian coming back up from depth but I don’t know was it his prescribed mask or his compass wasn’t working, he swam in the opposite direction over to polish divers on the shot line off the winch, with me hot on his tail. After retrieving Brian and redirecting him in the right direction, I noticed Mike heading off in his own direction! Since my last dive with Mike was a game of hide and go seek, I guessed he was playing follow the leader! Finally we got ourselves together and we had an enjoyable dive with no casualties. So much for the jolly, I probably would have been better off diving with the trainees, experienced divers my foot!