Last week a handful of RedBallooners went shark diving in Sydney. Seeing as I didn’t go, but have a fascination with the whole slightly nerve-racking concept, I thought the next best thing would be to interview one of our designers, Joy, about her experience.
Me: So, shark diving. Have you done it before?
Joy: No, I haven’t been before. I’ve been snorkelling, though. Not diving.
Me: Were you nervous about sharing a tank with a man-eater?
Joy: I was nervous, but more nervous about being under water.
Me: So it was the scuba diving that was making you nervous?
Joy: It was more the scuba part that scared me because I can’t swim very well and I’ve always had a fear of being under water.
Me: But once you got going, was it OK?
Joy: At the beginning it was a little hard, but after a few exercises, showing us how to breathe under water, it got easier. Then it’s a lot better once you’re in the tank.
Me: So how was it, swimming with sharks?
Joy: It was actually good. I kind of forgot about the sharks being there because I was concentrating on my breathing. Plus, they actually avoid you. They swim around you, as if you’re not there.
Me: Could you touch them?
Joy: No, you weren’t allowed to touch anything. I wish!
Me: What else was in the tank with you?
Joy: They had four sharks in the tank – three males and one female. And they’ve got a big turtle, and small fish and lots of rays.
Me: People look pretty weird with their scuba gear on underwater. Was that surreal in itself, being under water?
Joy: Yes, it was really surreal. The whole gearing up was exciting, even though you look a bit weird with the goggles on. Everyone looks cross-eyed! The whole experience was good.
Me: So what was the highlight?
Joy: Just being underwater, experiencing and seeing everything. The experience is so different. Being inside the tank has a very calming effect. The whole thing is very relaxing, which is really strange to say because you are supposed to be scared because there’s sharks everywhere. But watching them swim around you calmly, and all the fish swimming by you… It’s just a really different environment, it’s like being in another world.
Me: So who would you buy this for if you were buying it as a gift?
Joy: I would probably buy it for Gary, my boyfriend, because he’s into exciting experiences.
Me: And would you do it again?