By Vera Koo, Women’s Outdoor News, Published September 5, 2017
This shark adventure is a guest column written by Vera Koo’s husband, Carlos …
Vera and I have different avenues toward pursuing our hobbies.
Vera is drawn to activities that she can try to conquer. She’s in it for the challenge. I pursue hobbies that I think are fun.
One question I hear often is, “Carlos, what do you do when Vera is off practicing her shooting or competing in matches?”
I’m not at a loss for things to do. Vera spending time shooting gives me a chance to pursue the activities I enjoy. Scuba diving is one such activity.
I’m a proficient diver. Initially, we gave scuba a shot as a family 20-plus years ago. Vera and I and our 2 daughters took a class from an instructor in our swimming pool. I’ve always believed in exposing Vera and our children to all sorts of different activities. Vera is more of a land animal. She didn’t care for scuba diving, and we decided not to take it up.
But then Vera started getting busier with her shooting, so I decided to take scuba lessons and finish my certification. Around that time, our daughter, Christina, got her certification, too. I’ve been diving for about 10 years.
Although my daughter enjoys dives in the Pacific off the California coast, I prefer to dive in the warm, clear waters of the Caribbean.
I’ve gone on dives in Grand Bahama, Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Bora Bora. I also enjoy piloting and own a plane. I’ll fly commercial to Florida, where I store my plane, and then I pilot to my destination.
I like activities with a lot of action, and diving offers that. It’s captivating to see all the tropical fish. It’s a totally different experience than being on the land. There’s a blast of color all around you, and at times fish are inches from your face.
Three times, I’ve upped the adventure and gone on the shark arena dive at Stuart’s Cove in Nassau, Bahamas. I didn’t seek out this particular dive to conquer a fear or prove anything to myself. I did it because I thought it sounded fun.
I’ll admit I was a bit nervous my first time, though.
I asked a dive school employee whether anyone had ever been bitten during the dive. He said no, but regardless, I figured it was no bigger risk than driving on the freeway. Accidents happen, but that doesn’t keep me off the road.