Muck diving

Sounds charming, does it, but it really means diving over a dark sandy seafloor. The guide pokes this and that with his pointer, and suddenly a small school of fish bursts out of the ground, or a warty Devil Scorpion Fish gives up its perfect camouflage and swims away, or a fish with tall fins somehow materializes from soft coral, or a stingray with bright blue spots flaps away. Mud diving is all about the little creatures.

But the first dive of the day was to the wreck of a big Japanese freighter at 16-30 meters, all overgrown with corals and little curious animals living in them: nudibranchs are the butterflies of the sea, in all sorts of bizarre shapes and colors. Like that bright purple slug with yellow antlers.

This was my first real dive that wasn’t part of my training. The nice thing about those is that the dive center staff puts together the gear and cleans it afterwards.