A complete diving weekend doing only two dives, but driving up and down to Brighton 4 times, is a bit odd!
Well it was all to do with the weather gods and Steve’s Birthday. As Steve’s was over the Brighton weekend, Jo had organised Hotels and a lovely Restaurant. She did inform everybody that was going on that weekend, nice and early, that we had to book in the Hotel. Now! Most of use completely forgot and it never got done, YES holding my hand up high! GUILTY! Some of us, somehow, booked a completely different date in the hotel, and thus were also not allowed to stay.
It would not have been a complete disaster if the weather had played nice. We would do a dive or two during the day then tootle back to the Hotel and get changed and go out for a meal. Well the weather did not play nice and Saturday was a complete blow out! So Sarah and I drove down from Hampshire in the evening had a three 1/5 hour get together and drove straight back. (It was nice though! Very good Mexican meal! Well worthwhile!)
The next day (thank the weather god, playing nice) the weather was lovely, blowing a 3 to 4 with stark blue skies. We arrived early as the DM said we needed to be there on time! So to our surprise/cheers and giggles the DM turned up late, blaming the sat nag for a wrong turn instead of using the common sense male “it’s in my head, I have been here 5 billion times before” directions. When all aboard, we set off in a leisurely pace with a spot of dolphin on the way, for the wreck of the City of Waterford. With a late slack, the first dive was later in the day, but nobody complained.
With ample of time left, the Skipper shot the wreck and waited for slack. Once arrived, we all jumped in pairs and explored the wreck. I never dived this wreck before and neither had Sarah. I was very delighted to spot Nudibranches and Flat worms all over the wreck. The schooling fish were thick swimming round with a bunch of scallops hiding in the sand below the gunwales. Lobster and edible crab a plenty back on board the wreck. The Gobies really sat down posing and waiting for the camera shutter to click. If I just had brought mine down, but noooo! It was sitting happily aboard the boat in my camera bag… pants!
Not for long the time down had finished and we were back on the boat in no time. After serving coffees and teas we headed back inshore for a shallow drift. The wind starting to pick up a bit and it was getting a little choppy but before we all knew it we were once again flung overboard and into the deep. The drift was a not very inspiring one, for most of the divers, complaining that there were only rocks and nothing else to see. We saw plenty and had a great time chasing critters and spooking flat fish.
Before we knew it we were heading back towards the harbour rocking and rolling getting through the mouth of the harbour and back inside the safety of the imposing harbour walls.
De-kitting the boat seems always faster than getting it on and before you could have blinked an eye everybody was back on the road. Except for me, Sarah, Jo and Steve.We stayed and had a pint in the Harvester and a bit to eat in the local Italian, waiting for the Sunday afternoon rush to die down.
All in all still a lovely weekend!