24 hours after waving goodbye to the glittery people and waters of Pom Pom Island and already I miss the ocean, the life, the people. Yes the short stint of air conditioning has healed the majority of my cuts, I’ve slept well pass the natural alarm clock marked by the end of fan time at 7:30AM, and have indulged in the luxury of restaurant quality food and choice. Yet, the lack of modern convenience, insect bites and salty showers is a tax I am more than willing to pay for the life of freedom, community, and awesome access to the ocean TRACC provides.
The short list of what my time on Pom Pom has meant to me is long. It includes– the faces of people laughing underwater – the bright blue gradients of ocean extending from the shore – grabbing a tank and diving at sunrise – feeling weightless – flooding my mask because I can stop smiling – eating bananas underwater – noticing something new about the ocean everyday – excited underwater screams – getting to know the resident creatures of the house reef – collecting and planting soft coral and hard coral, even when the current rips, it storms, and bringing baskets up and down is a chore – peanut butter kaya cracker time – underwater hammering – watching the artificial reef I have helped to build become populated with life – sand everywhere – feeling too hot – the freedom to engineer my own projects – holes in all of my perpetually dirty clothes – jetty time – tanned legs – wonderfully calloused and beat up feet – the stars – the bioluminescence – night diving and the whole other ocean scene that is illuminated under torch light – new favorite ocean creatures – hammock time – waking up to the sound of rain on my tent – learning something new so naturally everyday – the ragged pages of the ocean creatures book – big boat days – jumping off the jetty at Timba Timba – Rasma’s pumpkin curry – Lizz’s cakes – Gon’s roti – turtle walks – moon shadows – Sunday Fundays – Monday Dry Days (sometimes) – getting to know people I wouldn’t otherwise – how the sun hits the water in the evening and the morning to give the surface a metallic sheen – beams of light breaking through the oceans surface – falling to the ocean floor from laughter – card games during safety stops – being directly involved in marine conservation –150 plus hours of accumulated underwater time – the community – the freedom to dive all the time – and being surrounded by passion and care for the ocean.
But most of all…. The People. The Diving. The Ocean.
Big love to all the many who made my time at TRACC what it was and all the enthusiasm and care for the ocean world.
If you want to help with any marine conservation activity, please
check our website http://tracc.org or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
For more updates on TRACC check out our Facebook, Twitter or Google +
Reef conservation would not be possible without generous financial support from
GEF /SGP for Malaysia who are helping our community activities and coralreefcare.com who generously provided materials to build the new reefs.
If visits to Tracc are not possible then please help with financial support and follow their projects on Facebook.