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    July 30, 2006

    The Official Closing Party For American Diving, Lomita, CA

    John told me about this party as we were packing up from the last dive.

    I stopped by Sea D Sea and saw Jake, who worked for American Diving until just recently.

    Jake also told me about this party while filling my tank; he was planning on stopping by himself.

    American Diving

    American Diving on Pacific Coast Hwy and Walnut in Lomita.

    The party in the back.

    I arrived at the party fairly early.

    There was plenty of beer, the barbecue was just getting started, and a volunteer DJ was setting up in the back to spin some disks.

    This is a sad day for me as this is the shop that kept me diving during the time I didn’t have a domestically “officially recognized” C-card.

    However, everyone who dealt with American Diving sort of knew that their days were numbered.

    The manager Steve had been working as a safety diver for movie studios the last couple of years and his focus shifted away from running the shop full time.

    The owner of the shop retired from her profession of nursing and needed to turn a profit with the shop or sell it – it was no longer a potential tax write-off.

    The shop was almost sold until the new owners of the building raised their rent from $1100 a month to $4,000 a month – the shop was doomed from then on.

    American Diving sort of had a later reputation for having no equipment and in some local diving circles “poor customer service.”

    But this is where Instructor Ed brought me to buy my wetsuit and basic equipment.

    I also took my Advanced, Rescue and Dive Master Course here and helped with many of their classes and events.

    Me, Laurie and Steve.

    Me, Laurie and Steve.

    My last walk through the shop.

    My last walk through the shop.

    This is the place I bought most of my initial equipment and took my continuing diver’s education – in evening classes in sweltering heat.

    Tom from American Diving.

    Tom from American Diving; Tom is an expert at SCUBA equipment repair.

    The party is just getting started…

    The party is just getting started…

    …unfortunately, I have to leave.

    …unfortunately, I have to leave.

    Good bye American Diving!

    I will miss you!

    Logged Dive #199 – Redondo, Redondo, Redondo AGAIN!

    Veteran’s Park, Redondo Beach, CA

    Dove with Instructor John’s Basic Open Water student Mohamed and ex-student Spike.*

    In With: 2100 psi
    Out With: 1000 psi
    Max depth: 60 feet
    Waves:  2-5 foot swells, mellow
    Visibility: 15 feet and pretty clear
    Water Temperature: Warm until the cold thermo cline at 50 feet or so.
    Total Bottom Time: About 20 minutes
    *Note: Students names have been changed.

    John dove with Suzuki and her husband Arrogant Asshole;  I took his student Mohammed and former student Spike on this dive.

    We all made it out with no problems and submerged to 15 feet or so.

    I lead the way – swam to the shelf and went down to 60 feet;  we went North along the shelf.

    Spike gave me the universal “I am cold sign.”

    There was sort of a thermo cline.

    We entertained ourselves by annoying the usual crabs, sand dollars and starfish.

    As I remember, Spike ran short of air first – at least he consumed more at depth.

    We swam back to the shore almost entirely under water – I could easily stand to take my fins off, but was a little too deep as I lost my footing a few times.

    Spike and Mohammed made it to shore with no problems.

    John and his group followed about 15 minutes after us.

    Suzuki passed the class;  I THINK Mohamed may need another dive before graduating.

    John advised Suzuki and her Arrogant Asshole husband that she is certified and ” to leave the camera at home, go boat diving and resort diving.

    “Don’t dive here and don’t go beach diving until you are comfortable.”

    I wish her the best;  I hope he doesn’t kill her.

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