Only seven shopping days ’til Christmas.  I mean only seven days left in the 2014 spring program season at the Florida Sea Base. Today’s arrivals include one Scuba Liveaboard crew, and five Coral Reef Sailing crews.  This is the LAST arrival day of the 2014 spring season.


As the number of crews dwindles, so to does the number of staff.  Scuba Instructors Jim Lhulier and Mark Gilbert plus Divemasters Wally Wilkerson, Andy Clements and Alec Walborn, Dive Boat Mate Chris White and Captains Bert Hubby and Carl Olshenske will all be departing in the next day or two.

Part-time Scuba Instructor Richard Goldman (he has a “real” job) was recognized by PADI as an Elite Instructor for issuing more than 50 scuba certifications in 2013.

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

Captain Alex Bergstedt is the Scuba Commissioner at the Florida Sea Base and an almost full-time Scuba Instructor.  He was recognized for issuing over 300 scuba certifications in 2013.

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

Several Florida Sea Base Divemasters have been won full PADI/Venturing Scholarships to upgrade from Divemaster to Instructor and at least two (Britney Haury and Captain Christy Clemenson immediately come to mind) have been runners up for very prestigious PADI honors.  While there is no award for being the mentor to so many award winning instructors, it has been a pleasure to work with each one of them over the years.  (I think I’ll go to my room and cry now.) Rich, Captain Christy and Captain Alex are integral players in the Divemaster Academy held each winter at the Florida Sea Base.  They are all rated as PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainers ( a notch up from the entry level Open Water Scuba Instructor rating). Rich and Captain Alex are working on their PADI Instructor Development Course (IDC) Instructor ratings and Captain Christy is a full-time  nursing student.  The last I heard, Britney was working full-time as a Scuba Instructor in Hawaii.


The wind clocked to the west yesterday and steadily built all day.  By supper time it was howling through the rigging on the sailboats and tossing them around in their slips.  By 8 pm the wind was blowing at 23 knots.  It was a bumpy night of challenging sleep. Today we are expecting a low of 70° and a high of 82.  The wind should decrease to 10 knots by late afternoon.  We have a 5% chance of rain.


I am headed to Miami International Airport to pick up my lovely bride at the airport.

Capt. Steve Willis
Professional Scuba Bum™
Aboard S/V Escape

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