My name is Paden, and I just finished my IDC/IE with Camille Lemmens through Oceans 5 on Gili Air, Indonesia.
Just a few months ago I was a divemaster living in a place where you can’t really dive and you are hard pressed to find anybody who knows much about diving. This would just not due so I started researching different places in the world, and dive centers in those places. I was lucky enough to find Oceans 5 website. I became friends with them on Facebook, and really liked what I saw. So I decided to send them an email asking about their IDC. They replied promptly with great things to say about the island and the diving. After some thought I decided to make the 40 hour journey to the other side of the world to become a dive instructor and I have not regretted it for one minute since.
When I finally got to the island all the people at the dive center were very welcoming and helped me get comfortable on the island. After a little while I realized that the dive center was like a big family. A big family that loves to adopt new kids, for five months or five days they don’t care. I had been diving with Oceans 5 for about four months before I started my IDC. In those four months I learned a lot about diving. I felt I had grown a lot as a diver. Then Camille arrived to start the IDC, and in those 8-10 days Camille taught me more than I learned in those four months.
The IDC was an intensive session of learning. Although, the way Camille organized it the course was a fun learning environment. There were only four of us in the IDC and we all had a lot of fun. Camille had all of us more than prepared to pass our IE. We were lucky enough that the PADI examiner came to Gili Air for such a small group. Camille stuck around during the IE to give the candidates moral support. He even stuck around for the after party. It was a night to remember.
My experience on Gili Air has been greater than any dream I could have. I have been very lucky to find such an amazing place full of amazing people. I would like to thank Sander, Simone, and everyone involved with Oceans 5 from staff to customers. You all have made for a great time and I can’t wait to come back to this small island paradise. A big thanks to Camille for helping make my dream a reality, I can’t thank you enough for everything. And to everyone reading this if you have ever thought about becoming a dive professional I highly recommend it, and Gili Air is an amazing place to make that happen. To all the non-divers out there get out there and learn to dive! I never thought I would enjoy diving, actually the thought terrified me, and now you see where I am.
Paden Wilson, USA, OWSI, November 2012, Gili Air, Indonesia