There’s a legit anthropological theory that says humans went from nomad hunters and gatherers to sedentary farmers because of beer, which thus becomes responsible for the greatest shift in the history of humanity. Alcohol, which we have been producing since about 7000-5000 BC (Sept. 2018 edit, 13000 yr old “brewery” found in Israel) is also credited (along with other drugs) with the birth of art and religious thought. True that. I’m not sure I’m prepared to go that far or get drawn into a debate about the evils of the materialism that comes from a sedentary society or the origins of religious experience (booze? magic mushrooms? aliens? divine revelation?). What I can say, is that for the Diving & Chillin’ Club, the chillin’ usually involves some sort of fermentation.
Sandflies. A word that can strike terror in the stoutest of hearts. Sometimes called noseeums, ’cause you don’t, by the time you feel their bite (if you do), it’s too late, they’re the ninja bloodsuckers poison injectors of flies. The itch is the terrible part, and for some people the welts are super painful, not just ugly. In both cases they are much worse than mosquito bites. If you scratch them, all sorts of hell breaks loose. I’m talking gaping holes in your skin, inflamed red mini mountains of flesh, dried pussy lymph domes, and of course the itch never goes away. You will easily scratch yourself raw, bleeding and into a serious infection.That’s exactly what happened to a member of the D&C, it necessitated a trip to the ER (that’s where the pirate doctors practice) and 5 weeks of antibiotic cream.
I don’t think I’m a very knowledgeable or experienced diver, and so it is a very sobering thought to realize how little I knew in the first years of my underwater adventures. As a member of the D&C group often says Fortune favours the foolish, and I think he means me. He’s not wrong. Though, unlike other areas of my life, I have never been careless or rash in scuba diving, there were times I just did not know any better. Today I still have tons to learn, but one thing I did pick-up, is that no one is more in charge of my safety than myself.