Despite the fact that we had four divers busy with their Instructor Foundation Courses, and the fact that it was still blowing a northerly, we gathered enough divers to make two days possible...

Charles (friend of Clint)
Barry (friend of Clint)
Mark Warne
Derek Boustred
Paul (me)

After spending some time assembling kit (start of season syndrome), we headed off to Teignmouth, with Clint towing the boat. It was another cold clear day, with a 12mph-ish northerly wind. The direction of the wind, whilst chilly, did at least prevent any big waves for diving out of Teignmouth (we were in the lee of the land). The sea had occasional small white caps, which is nice.

Whilst we were piling kit up at the bottom of the slip, ready to be loaded aboard the boat after launch, I noticed Clint looking a bit serious. Time to lighten the mood, I thought, so I proceeded to do a professional quality prat-fall whilst carrying full kit, right in front of Clint. After he'd finished his 'concerned with my welfare' laughing fit, Clint gave me generous marks for artistic content and technique - 8.2 and 8.4 respectively. Pretty high marks for the start of the season, but everyone is welcome to try and beat them. My jeans are, as we speak, going through their second wash to remove the slipway skid mark from them. Never mind those 'tricky grass stains' that the detergent adverts witter on about...

Time to depart for the Bretagne. Charles and Barry went in first, closely followed by Derek and myself. Derek and I arrived at the bow of the wreck, after a short swim over shellfish covered ground (hermit crabs, winkles?? they were only small, due to the temperature of the water). We popped up on deck and performed the tour at a leisurely pace inspecting all and sundry. After 30 minutes, or so, we sent up a dsmb (delayed surface marker buoy) and ascended to the surface. We then commenced drinking coffee and injecting air into dry-suits.

Charles and Barry then turned up with a bag of Scallops. Much to Charles' and I's revulsion, Barry proceeded to open up a couple and eat them raw - yeuch! Some of us were born to like fresh seafood, others of us prefer it cooked, I guess.

Once everybody was ready we headed back to the Galicia for Mark to try out his new drysuit on a sea dive. Charles and Barry went in for a keenie second dive on the Galicia whilst Mark and Clint kitted up.

At this point I felt it necessary to lighten the mood again...Clint turned round and knocked me with his cylinder (I'd been helping him as well - ingrate), although it was a minor blow I had nothing to grab on to...and went over the back of the boat in my drysuit and woolly hat. Cue the sympathetic (I'm sure) laughter, once they'd got sensible again they came to get me (no more than 10 minutes later). Just goes to emphasize that you can't assume it's okay to open a drysuit because you're staying on the boat (or intending to). Going overboard from the boat with a closed drysuit is funny (apparently), it wouldn't have been if I'd been unzipped.

Clint, in his semi-dry, took Mark in for a decent length dive, no problems reported. Once we'd recovered Mark and the rather chilled Clint we headed back to Teignmouth.

The wind-chill proved to be a bit of a problem for some on the way back, despite some of those wearing wind proof clothing. Please bear this in mind until the temperature picks up; even some of those in drysuits found it cold. Wind proof coats, woolly hats, gloves and coffee were the order of the day.

The boat was recovered to Exeter without (further) incident.