Early Learning With Alligators-That's So Sick
Diver|September 2017

The arrival of children can change divers’ lives – you don’t know if they will share your passion as they grow up or – inadvertently – stifle yours. So CHARLIE OLDFIELD went through a range of emotions when son Dylan announced that he wanted to dive…

Charlie Oldfield

SOME ASPECTS OF LIFE in our house can be classified as either BC(Before Children) or AC (After Children). Dive holidays is one area that falls into life BC.

So when our son Dylan asked when he could learn to dive, our emotions ranged from euphoria to apprehension.

Basic research told us that he would have to wait until he was 10 before taking his PADI Junior Open Water Diver course (certified to 12m depth). So he patiently waited for what to him seemed an eternity.

Shortly after his 10th birthday we packed him and a friend off for a try-dive at a local club, to make sure that he was comfortable with the reality of scuba.

At the end of the session the pair emerged from the pool with huge grins on their faces. In the words of two excited 10 year-olds: “That was sick!”

Researching our family holiday, the prime consideration was Dylan’s desire to qualify as a diver. Taking FCO travel advice into account, we opted for Mexico.

Next step was to choose a hotel that met with the kids’ approval – it must have a buffet, pool and lots of native wildlife. We also needed a good dive-centre on site. We chose the Grand Sirenis Resort, Riviera Maya and, having read glowing reviews, contacted Blue Experience Diving.

Owner Tim Neuman told me how Dylan should go about completing the eLearning part of his course online, as we didn’t want him spending half of his holiday in a classroom. As our departure neared, Dylan set to work.

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