Tuesday, November 27, 2007


It was nice to get back to Cozumel again. Some things had been praying on my mind in New York and I always find the diving here washes all of the worries away. Michele has promised to write a guest spot on our cave diving experiences. Exciting, challenging and beautiful...

So diving.... A favorite is the arrow crab. They always seem so busy and I imagine them shouting at me with a little voice that sounds like they have held their nose or taken a good breath of helium. I think that it is the shape of their heads, rather than an actual nose which sticks up in the middle of their little faces. But I like to think of them as little willow the whisp type characters with some very important business at hand. Its kind of evil but I do like to grab them out of their little holes and put them in my hands. I always put them back in the same spot - but I do like to see them get all fussed up!! They do try to attack with those tinsy little claws - its so cute:) "ouch, stop - put me down, put me down, I have very important business to attend to today on my pink spong, take that you big ruffian".
We met up with Sophia in Playa and life seems to be going well for her. Also spent time with Josie. Dove every day (buseo cadi dias) with Juan Avilla - a ready made Mexican dad. Colebra and Benjamin both were helping me practice my Spanish. Their English is only a little better than my Spanish so this works quite well.

Was also nice to see Monica from the whale shark trip. Cozumel flew over so fast we didn't get to hang out - but when I move to Cozumel she'll be a nice friend. Miguel said he has a friend who is English and has a hair dressing salon - excellent - and a gym where they do yoga.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Off to Mexico again this weekend....

I'll be spending a 5 days in Playa del Carmen Cave Diving in the Cenotes and then 4 days in Cozumel. http://www.divingplayadelcarmen.com/images/map-pdc2web.jpgLooking forward to my trip. Just came back from Spanish class with Mercedes and hopre to be brave enough to try some of it out, or at least hope to understand more.

I have mixed feelings about taking my Cavern and intro to cave courses. The Cenotes look beautiful but the prospect of being in a cave so far from the surface is a little scarey. Thankfully my friend Michele who is taking the course with me is even more cautious than I am when it comes to diving so we should be OK. Its also very easy for me to communicate with her underwater. http://www.discoverydiving.com/images/photos/charlienelson/1004-625%20Vaca%20Ha.JPG
Excited about seeing all of my Mexican friends too. Also will hopefully meet up with Sophia, Cat, Jessica, Travis and Jordan - phew, more people to see than on a trip back to Newcastle!!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Only Fools and Horses

OK I'm getting carried away on Utube, but I'm teaching a scuba class and they are doing their exams. So I'm using my time wisely - these clips make me pee my pants:

Horse Riding

This morning I felt great after about 10 hours sleep (by the way the Dali Lama says sleep is the best meditation and I absolutely agree - particularly on my desk at lunch time - but I digress). So after cleaning up my apartment, doing laundry, talking to my parents, few friends , lunch, I decided to check out a fairly local riding school. I used to ride in England and was always a little scared. Firstly because horse riding is scary, secondly because I would ride with my mother who would work me up into a terrified frenzy on the drive to the stables and lastly - well because riding horses is dangerous. I think the only sport more dangerous statistically is formula 1 (forget where I read that but it stuck). Hell look at poor Chrisotpher Reeves. Anyway I went out to Rockleigh Equestrian Center. The drive was spectacular as fall has been late this year and the roads were lined with trees in burning oranges and reds. The class I was able to watch was two young girls, and although it was English style, the instructor was a bit basic. They were doing jumping and cantering and the horses looked nice. I really wanted to give it a go. Had a little chat with the instructor afterwards and she didn't really understand dressage. Another downside of this place was that it does not have an indoor school which means riding in the winter is out. Next time I have some free time I am going to check out Bergen Equestrian Center (40 Fort Lee Rd, Leonia, 201 242 1920). Not sure if this place has an indoor school but the Columbia University Equestrian team practice there. OK so for those of you who don't know what dressage is here is a cool clip from utube. Obviously I am not quite up to this standard yet - after a few weeks of training though who knows!!!

I have finally found my husband!!

OK so I may have a little competition here. Non the least, one of my friend's Allie, who despite being very happily married is also in love with this man. I lifted this clip off Allie's blog, primarily because she's better at Spanish than I am and has been able to translate his lyrics, which are very sweet. I have forgiven Jorge for his part in my being pulled over last week. JORGE DREXLER:

By the way Allie if you read this could you translate 'Samba del Olvido' next?? I tried but I'm pretty sure I'm missing a lot of it:)

Here are the lyrics in Spanish:

El velo semitransparente
del desasosiego
un día se vino a instalar
entre el mundo y mis ojos...
Yo estaba empeñado en no ver
lo que ví, pero a veces

la vida es más compleja de
lo que parece...

Pensaste que me iba a quebrar
y subiste tu apuesta,
me hiciste sentir el sabor
de mi propia cocina...
Volví a creer que se tiene
lo que se merece,
la vida es más compleja de
lo que parece...

Todas las versiones
encuentran sitio en mi mesa...
Todas mis canciones
por una sola certeza.

No quiero que lleves de mi
nada que no te marque.
El tiempo dirá si al final
nos valió lo dolido...

Perderme, por lo que yo ví
te rejuvenece,

la vida es más compleja de
lo que parece...

Mejor, o peor, cada cual
seguirá su camino...
Cuánto te quise, quizás,
seguirás sin saberlo...
Lo que dolería por siempre,
ya se desvanece,

la vida es más compleja de
lo que parece...

Here's Allie's translation:
The semi-transparent veil of unrest
One day came between my eyes and the world
I was committed to not seeing what I saw, but sometimes

Life is more complex than it seems

You thought that I was going to fold
and you raised your bet
You made me feel the taste of my own cooking (better translated as "You made me lie in the bed I made" or a similar sentiment)
I came to believe that people get what they deserve

Life is more complex than it seems

All of the versions have a place at the table
All of my songs with one sole certainty

I don't want you to take from me anything that doesn't mark you
Time will tell in the end if all the pain was worth it to us

Losing me, from what I see, rejuvenates you

Life is more complex than it seems

For better or worse, everyone will go on their way
How much I loved you, maybe you will continue without knowing
What would hurt forever is already fading

Life is more complex than it seems

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Brush With the Law

So for the first time in my life I was pulled over speeding yesterday. I was on the way to Dutch Springs Quarry to teach my last class of the season. It was 6am, the roads were clear and I was listening to Jorge Drexler and trying to translate the lyrics in my head. Flying along on a clear highway. When I saw flashing lights behind me... FUCKERY!!! was my first thought. But what can you do. I pulled over. Luckily my friend Michele, a fellow traffic felon, had been pulled over last year with me in her car, so I knew the drill. I put my interior light on (nothing to hide here) and my hands on the wheel (I didn't want the poor guy to think I might pull a gun on him). He let me sweat for a few minutes and then came up and shone his flash light into the back of my car. He saw my scuba gear and asked if I was going to Dutch Springs. A lucky break... do I detect a fellow diver. Again, following Michele's coaching, I decided to come clean. Apparently I was traveling at 85mph in a 65 zone. I fessed up that I'd been consumed by the music I was listening to and the clear road and had just lost track of my speed. My documents were collected and again I was subjected to a wait while he radioed in my info and checked my record. Time for a quick prayer, both fingers crossed. FINALLY the nice police officer came back and said he was going to 'cut me a big break' instead of giving me four points on my license (which would have meant a huge insurance hike) he would let me off with a written warning. Relief.. A close call though and this meant that I had to drive excruciatingly slowly during the rest of my journey to Dutch Springs. I am now thinking of investing in one of those radar detector things that Jeff has.