Tag Archives: diving
September 20, 2011

PV017: Diving in Zanzibar

There’s not much to say about the video that we didn’t already say in the video, but I’ll give it a try:

We spent a little more than a week on the island of Zanzibar, near a tiny village named Bwejuu.  We spent the majority of that time very near our lodge, but we did manage to get out of our hammocks long enough to do a 2-tank dive with the Rising Sun Dive Center.  Glad we did!  The diving staff that worked there were great and we saw or did something new on each of our dives!

Technical stuff:

In some ways, I wish we could reshoot elements of this video.  For instance, our underwater footage is overwhelming blue — so close to monochrome that my normal trick of color-correcting some red back into the imagery didn’t work at all.  In all fairness, I expected this would happen as soon as I learned we would be diving at a depth of almost 100 feet.  Water filters out the colors of light and red is the first to go.  Besides that, it was an overcast day, and the sunlight wasn’t that strong to begin with.  We could see just fine down there, but our point-and-shoot camera can only do so much…  (Too bad we can’t travel with diving lights, too!)

We also recorded our voice-overs outdoors, at the lodge.  The tropical scenery behind us is quite fitting, but the wind noise was something we couldn’t avoid.  Not to mention the birds.

Still, even with these minor problems, I think you’ll get a good sense of what our dives were like when you watch this video.


Rising Sun Dive Center
Breezes Beach Club and Spa
Our tour review of the Rising Sun Dive Center


December 20, 2010

PVX: Diving in San Cristóbal, Galapagos

View the same video in high-definition (720p) on Youtube.

After we finished up with our Galapagos excursion, Jeff, Oksana, and I found ourselves with a few days to kill in San Cristóbal. Our original plan was to go to Santa Cruz and look for diving excursions out of Puerto Ayora, but being on hotel lockdown for a day (during the Ecuadorian 2010 Census) left us a little short on time. We decided the best thing to do with our remaining days would be to simply dive out of Puerto Bazquerizo Moreno again.

We asked around at a few shops and figured out which dives were in the area. Kicker Rock has to be the hands-down best, but we’d already done that a couple days before. We opted to save a little money (and time) by doing two dives closer to town. We found the Dive and Surf Club who offered us a 2-tank dive for $85.

The next day, we discovered there would be one more person accompanying us. Tim, a fellow traveler who was just 6 dives or so away from his Divemaster license, was coming along, too. In fact, it was Tim who sent me an email about a week after we returned to the mainland, asking if any of our underwater footage came out…

This video is for you, Tim!

September 13, 2010

PV011: Сезон Лангустов (Russian version of Lobster Season)

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Поскольку Оксанин брат был своего рода центром истории этого подкаста, и потому что он только говорит по русски, и не понимает не слова  о том, что мы сказали в этом эпизоде, мы решили добавить субтитры к этой версии нашего видео специально для него. Я не нашел (простой способ), как  поместить субтитры в плеере Flash, так что я решил вернутся к Quicktime .MOVs.  Если видео не играет, убедитесь, что бесплатная версия QuickTime Player установленна на вашем компьютере.

(Since Oksana’s brother was sort of the story behind our last podcast, and since, because he only speaks Russian, he can’t understand a word of what we said, we decided to make a subtitled version of the video for him.  I couldn’t figure out (an easy way) to make the subtitles show up in the Flash player, so I went back to straight-up Quicktime .MOVs.  If you can’t play the video, make sure you download the free Quicktime player.)


August 30, 2010

PV011: Lobster Season

About three weeks ago, Oksana and I took her brother and sister-in-law, Andrey and Natasha, down to Key West. They were visiting from Russia and we took it upon ourselves to show them a good time. Andrey received his PADI open water certification course in Katmchatka this spring — in the COLD! — just so he could dive with us here in the States.

On our last trip through Key West, Oksana and I stumbled upon a little dive shop called Dive Key West. We had a wonderful experience with them, so we knew right where to take Andrey. What we didn’t realize, however, was that we would be there for the opening day of lobster season…

Technical notes: I had a little problem with… ahem, I mean I was fortune enough to have a learning experience with the audio on this podcast. I don’t know why our Zoom H2 picked up interference from our iPhones — they were both clear across the room and it’s never happened before — but our “clean” audio track was riddled with cell phone noise. The (slightly) lesser of two evils was to use the crappy audio record by the Canon 5D’s on-board mic. I have no idea where the clicking sounds throughout that track came from (because we were careful to turn off the AC and check for other noises in our hotel room.)  At any rate, I did the best I could with a little noise reduction and music.  Anyway, next time: phones powered all the way off.


February 4, 2010

Diving in Culebra

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Back in November, Oksana and I spent some time in Puerto Rico. While visiting one of the “Spanish Virgin Islands,” Culebra, we managed to fit in a two-tank dive with Aquatic Adventures. They took us out to Lana’s Cove and Carlos Rosario’s “The Wall.”

Oksana and I used the dives to experiment with a new underwater housing for her Panasonic Lumix TZ5. While not the best underwater gear, the whole setup is small, light, and travel-friendly. While the lack of a decent flash unit blurred practically every photo, it seemed to record decent video when we kept our movements smooth.

Because of a late start, our second outing unexpectedly turned into a night dive. I didn’t anticipate that the camera would be much use, but I brought it anyway. Glad I did.

On the boat, we met a couple, Michael and Kimberly, from Kansas who were enjoying their first few open water dives after getting certified. We had dinner with them afterwards at Mamacita’s. I mentioned that I’d pointed the camera in their direction a few times during the dives and I promised to send them a video clip or two once we got home. Well, I barely had two weeks back in Alaska before I left on a month-long Ecuador trip. Last week I finally got around to digging up those video clips…


October 30, 2009

PV006: Diving with Dive Key West

Hoo boy.  This was a tough podcast to edit.  I can remember working on the first cut on the airplane down to Seattle back in early September.  Why so difficult?  Well, I think I underestimated how much “story” I wanted to put in.  As I mention in the video, Oksana and I wanted to tie this episode back to the last, so we tailored our little speeches around that.  Unfortunately, once I started editing, I realized I had absolutely nothing to show while we talked — we’re not in the habit of taking videos of dive shop storefronts. Yet.

I decided to do what I could with what I had, but the real problem was that I lost one crucial little thing:  Motivation.  Eventually I battered my way through the editing process, but I’m not 100% happy with the results.  Oksana really liked it, though.  Maybe you will, too.

We did a total of four dives with Dive Key West and we’ve got a couple more stories to tell.  I don’t know if I’m going to jump right into that now or wait until we get back from our Puerto Rico vacation coming up in November.  That might be the perfect time to practice some “on the road” podcasting… we’ll see.

(Update: Never did get around to editing the rest of that footage, but we did go back and dive with Dive Key West again in 2010.  Check out our Lobster Season video!)


August 31, 2009

PV005: Diving in Key West

Last summer, Oksana and I bought a Jeep in Florida and we drove it back to Alaska.  Since we were already down there, we decided to take a quick trip to Key West to check out the diving.

This is a little video about our first two dives (of six) down there.  I had a tough time editing this together — it was definitely more work than play.  (Oksana and I need to get more cover footage when we’re on vacation; sure would have been nice to have more than a couple random pictures of the town when I was editing the first part!)  I was frustrated with this one right up until the end, when I started to play around with the music.  I think the “Aquovisit” score in Soundbooth worked rather well — what do you think?

Our 2-tank dive with Captain’s Corner Dive Center cost about $80 each (with equipment rentals), but I have to say we weren’t terribly impressed.  Next up, a video about our other four dives with Dive Key West — now that’s a company we can recommend!