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    December 31, 2020

    What A Screwed Up Year – Good Riddance 2020

    This has to have been one of the worst years that I could have imagined.

    This is not news – the Corona Virus Pandemic, the collapse of the restaurant, bar and barber industry, the US election where we got to chose between a narcissistic reality show TV star and a corrupt career politician, race riots and looting (Oh, excuse me, peaceful protests) and government bailouts that enrich the billionaires and throw crumbs for everyone else.

    My employer tried to cut my hourly pay, but since there are minimum wage laws, they just cut my hours.

    And, I only went SCUBA diving three times this year, for various reasons a sad, all time record.

    Aside from the Pandemic and the stay at home order, I am also on-call every other week for work; so, every other weekend is shot for me and I’ve had to do other things on my “free” weekends.

    Not that every year is a reboot of events, but 2021 is the beginning of a new decade, also; I’m hoping for the best, but preparing for the worst.

    I went to a brief convention for work in February – that was my last taste of our previous “normal.”

    Austin, Texas - The Last "Normal" That I remember
    Austin, Texas – The Last “Normal” That I remember

    Now, onto the new normal…

    Always Keep A Mask Handy.
    Always Keep A Mask Handy.

    With bars and restaurants closed earlier in the year and later, social distancing parties became normal.

    Social Distancing Parties Became Normal Under Lock-Down.
    Social Distancing Parties Became Normal Under Lock-Down.
    Drink Beer, But Six Feet Apart!
    Drink Beer, But Six Feet Apart!

    I rented a dog so I could go on a walk and get some exercise…

    With Gyms And Beaches Closed, Dog Walking Became Popular Exercise.
    With Gyms And Beaches Closed, Dog Walking Became Popular Exercise.
    No Mask, No Service!
    No Mask, No Service!
    Merchants prepared for "Peaceful Protestors."
    Merchants prepared for “Peaceful Protestors.”

    During Summer, restaurants and bars that served food, opened briefly for outdoor dining; imagine a virus that is so smart, it can tell the difference between a bar that serves food and doesn’t.

    Outdoor Dining Became The Thing.
    Outdoor Dining Became The Thing.
    Professional Debriefer Paul, Nick and Me.
    Professional Debriefer Paul, Nick and Me.

    Working from home became the new normal…

    Professional Debriefer Paul’s Home Office.

    Even though I took a 20% pay cut, some that took a 100% pay cut started working for themselves.

    The New Economy -  Recycling And Salvage.
    The New Economy – Recycling And Salvage.

    Twenty million households are facing eviction in 2021…

    The Rising Trend In Housing - Owning Your Own Home.
    The Rising Trend In Housing – Owning Your Own Home.

    I know this blog “Jumped the shark” a couple of years ago, and I think I’m down to two readers, including me, but I’m hoping next decade will be better for diving, and more postings.

    Until then, Happy New Year, stay safe and don’t take anyone’s shit!

    July 19, 2020

    Diving Terranea Again

    It’s Dive Day Sunday again!

    I checked the swell map before leaving…

    Catalina to Palos Verdes was a solid dark blue!
    Catalina to Palos Verdes was a solid dark blue!

    If the visibility sucked, at least I shouldn’t have to deal with the waves.

    I headed to my favorite spot, Terranea Resort.

    Ben’s diving group was already checking conditions out.

    The Cove Was Pretty Flat
    The Cove Was Pretty Flat
    The Point Was Sort Of Flat, Too
    The Point Was Sort Of Flat, Too

    Ben’s group decided to take a dive off the Point.

    I decided to go off the Cove and find that diver’s torso that I saw last time.

    Randy said, “It’s easy to find, just get to 120 reef, go to the end and make a left – it’s right there.”

    I made an easy and slow entry, being careful not to slip on the rocks.

    Pigeon Shit Cave As It Looks Now
    Pigeon Shit Cave As It Looks Now
    I Descended.
    I Descended.

    Logged SCUBA Dive #521

    Solo Diving

    Terranea Resort, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA

    In With: 3000 psi
    Out With: 500 psi
    Max depth: 53 feet
    Waves: Pretty calm with occasional light surge
    Visibility: 15-20 feet, silty.
    Water Temperature: 54 degrees
    Air Temperature: 75 degrees
    Total Bottom Time: 46 minutes

    I thought visibility sort of sucked, but I didn’t realize at first that my mask had fogged over; I cleared it.

    I got to 120 reef and followed it away from the shore.

    A Garibaldi Off 120 Reef
    A Garibaldi Off 120 Reef

    Out of nowhere, a seal dive bombed me; I looked back and he was heading to the surface.

    A Seal Dive Bombs Me
    A Seal Dive Bombs Me

    I kept an eye on my back.

    That seal kept following me, preparing to attack, but he eventually left after realizing that he no longer had the element of surprise.

    Looking Up.
    Looking Up.

    I got to the end of the reef at 40 feet and made a left.

    I swam and swam and swam, and no torso.

    I had a feeling I was going the wrong way, so I turned around to head back.

    What happened here?
    What happened here?
    120 Reef

    I reached the very end of the reef, and there he was!

    He needs a name, I’ll call him The Dude.

    I Finally Found The Dude!
    I Finally Found The Dude!
    Close Up Of The Dude
    Close Up Of The Dude
    The Dude From The Back
    The Dude From The Back

    So, I sort of misinterpreted Randy’s directions.

    When you first hit 120 reef, follow along side of it going away from shore.

    When you get to the end of the reef, in 40 feet of water, make a left.

    It is right there.

    Heading Back
    Heading Back

    I made an easy, but non-macho exit.

    Debriefing Time!
    Debriefing Time!

    Ben’s group had a great dive.

    They reported 20 feet visibility at depth but also 52 degree water.

    Social Distancing, While Debriefing.
    Social Distancing, While Debriefing.

    We discussed who could have brought The Dude to 120 reef.

    Only one name came up consistently – Max Bottomtime.

    But, nobody has heard from him for at least two years.

    That conversation lead into reminiscing about the “Good Ol’ Days” when Terranea was abandoned Marineland, Divevets was an active and fun dive group and the people from way back when.

    We’ve lost some divers along the way – Shanon Wesserling, Dennis Gunn, Dan Rood all died, some divers moved away, others just disappeared from the scene.

    In 2022, I will have been diving for 20 years.

    To quote Bob Hope, “Thanks for the memories…”

    Until next time, stay safe my three readers!

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