PADDY, INSTRUCTOR

When did you start diving?

I started diving when I was 19 after my girlfriend got me on an open water course for my birthday- (GREAT GIFT))

I started my Divemaster as soon as I realised studying law wasn't for me, and that the slim chance of stardom (paying the bills) working on the stage. I spoke to the dive shop that I had done all of my prior training with and worked out a timetable to do my Divemaster in that would open me for their Open Water Scuba Instructor course the following year.

Dive goals?

Eventually, I would like to move back to New Zealand and run a dive operation of my own. There is a small town in the far north named Whangarai, that is largely unexplored by a more international community but holds many treasures and true beauty.

What keeps you diving and how do you keep the passion?

Diving keeps me passionate about diving! Every dive I make I feel just as excited about it now as I did when I started. No matter how many times I dive the same site I always find something new. Whether it’s a new animal, a new diver to the site, or a new toy to play with I'm always keen to have a splash, pretty much any body of water is waiting to be explored.

Favourite dive site?

My favourite dive site is a very small wreck back home, The Yung Penn in Owhiro Bay. The wreck is a part of a marine reserve created in 2008. The is only about eight meters deep, but is the home to literally hundreds if not thousands of juvenile lobsters as well as so many other characters. The wreck it self also has a pretty cool story, by my standards at least. The boat is a 20m fishing vessel that ran aground after the extremely drunk crew confused the narrow entrance to Wellington Harbour with the house lights that lined Owhiro Bay (which is situated about 7km from the Harbour entrance).

Favourite piece of equipment

My favourite bit of kit undoubtedly by camera. I've got a cannon G1x in an Ikelite housing.  This may not be the best underwater, but I'm not so fussy. I really enjoy getting out with it as often as I can, because I always seem to come across something unexpected when I slow down and chill with my camera.