With our ICC, VHF, and knot exams finished last night, today was all about wrapping things up and the beginning of the end of this wonderful experience. It was our final day in Saba where we would dive some famous sites during the day with Sea Saba Dive Center and prepare for our last major voyage in the evening.
We woke up bright and early at 6 am and prepared for a day of diving. The advanced divers and myself started our morning by diving our first deep-water dive at a site called Tent Bay. We reached a maximum depth of 90 feet for the advanced divers and 60 feet for the open water divers and saw a vast amount of marine life including: sea turtles, rays, garden eels, a seahorse, and a shark among other things. After that first initial dive, we had an hour-long surface interval before returning to the ocean for our second dive at a site called Man-of-War. At this location we dove at the base of two pinnacle rocks off the western coast of Saba. At this site the current was strong but the sites were incredible. Here my group saw more turtles, rays, and endless schools of fish ranging in colors, sizes, and types.
While the advanced divers were descending to great depths, the open water divers had the option to stay on Ocean Star and begin packing for our final voyage home, or go to our companion ship, Firebolt and go snorkeling. After two hours of diving, the advanced divers returned to Ocean Star with BBQ chicken wrap lunches already made and eaten by the open water divers, luckily they saved some for us. Once we returned, the newly certified open water divers set off with Sea Saba to do two dives of their own, while we stayed on Ocean Star.
Considering we have three more days left, its difficult to determine what we will need and what to pack away, so we finally got around to organizing the chaos within our bunks before the open water divers returned. It is such a wonderful feeling to see my friends see the world that lives under the sea, and for some, it was their first time seeing some of the amazing undersea creatures. For instance, on the first day one of my bunkmates told me how excited she was to see a turtle, and so while we were diving in Saba one of our last dives, I crossed my fingers that she would see a turtle. Lo and behold, she ended up seeing five turtles on her dive! Her excitement was easy to understand and I was so happy she finally got to dive with turtles. The open water divers also saw some rays and a few sharks at different dive sites. That has to be the best part about diving, each dive is 100% unique and you are the only one who is seeing the ocean unfold around you. No one will see the colors that you see, or see how the coral sways, or see things that no one else will see, it is a completely unique and special experience that can be talked about but is also a secret because only you know what you saw while diving.
Once everyone returned to Ocean Star after diving, we cleaned our home and slowly organized our belongings. We ate dinner around 17:30 and started passage prep while the sun was still out. At around 19:00 we got out of Saba and began our last overnight voyage. The passage took about 12 hours and we arrived back in the BVIs around 7 am, on day 18.