2013 Cape Verde

Finally done with the diving movie

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And I just want to tell you that I’m finally done with my diving movie. I got delayed a lot for various reasons but sometimes life interferes with my reality. This will be the final update for my adventure in Cape Verde and here is the video! Please stay patient, the cost of beeing totaly add free is a bit more loading time. Also, I’m not friend with YouTube, that’s probably why.

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2013 Cape Verde

Last night

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A quick summary of the past two days is: I got my advanced open water certificate thanks to my great instructor Sandra at Orca Dive Club. I also made a really fantastic deep dive just for fun today and one not so fantastic shallow dive but during that dive I saw a sting ray and some kind of water snake.

We had a nice night out in Santa Maria yesterday at Uhuru and Ocean Café. Today we ate lobster as our final dinner in Cape Verde. Then we proceded to some bar to have a couple of beers. Tomorrow will be the last breakfast at the hotel and then in the afternoon we will fly home again.

Video from the dives will be up and online as soon as I get the time to cut and edit, but that I need to do at home. In the meanwhile, please have a look in the gallery section for Cape Verde.

2013 Cape Verde

Choclate pizza (Sunday evening)

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An hour after dark we decided to go down town to get something to eat. After some walking around we found this place that looked quite local. Some plastic chairs and tables on the outisde, a woman with a grill a couple of meters away and a sign saying nothing much more than cheap food. So we ordered the most expensive thing on the menu which turned out to be garlic marinated grilled prawns. I think we paid 780 escudos or 7€.

After the dinner we walked around in Santa Maria for a while watching the nightlife and ended up at Ocean Café once again. Decided we wanted some kind of dessert. The barmaid said we should try something that sounded like choclate pieces to my ears but in reality turned out to be chocolate pizza. Tasty for sure, but to be honest. A bit too much!

2013 Cape Verde

The color red

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Since both me and Ove got pretty badly burnt by the sun there has been no diving for us these two days. Instead we have been spending time in the shadows until sundown. Hopefully we’ll be able to dive tomorrow!

2013 Cape Verde

First diving day

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Woke up early to be in time at the dive center. Turned out someone thought they said half past 7 when they really said half past 8. Oh well, Ove is no longer minister of time. Anyway. After getting a briefing from my dive instructor Sandra we went down to the beach and swam to the boat. The water was cold. Brrr. And then we were off. First dive spot some of the local fishermen had probably stolen the bouyo so we had to go to another place. Turned out we ended up at a ship wreck.

So diving at this ship wreck was my first dive at a ship wreck but also my first dive this year and the first dive in my PADI Advanced Open Water course. It was my deep dive, so we descended down to something like 28 meters and there I got to perform some tasks. Turns out I’m slow on head calculations under water but I’m even slower and dumber above the surface. I had to do 10 calculations under water and it took me 29 seconds. Back onboard the dive boat I did 10 similiar calculations on 32 seconds and I got more errors.

Then we proceeded to the next dive spot. This was my navigation dive. The first tasks was quite easy and I was eager to do them. A bit to eager it turned out. I ran out of air after a while and I had to use the back up regulator on Sandras tank. Bummer. But I managed good otherwise. Also, it was a good experience to use the back up air because now I know how it will work next time (if there ever will be a next time it happends).

After the diving we went into town in search for sun screen and after sun. We ended up geting the correct APN for the Unitel SIM-card I bought yesterday, a really good meal in town (seafood rice) and two large beers. Now we’re home treating our sunburn and relaxing, waiting for the night so we can go out again. We kind of look like Dr. Zoidberg from Futurama.

If anyone ever ends up on Cape Verde and buys a Unitel 3G SIM-card this might be of interest for you:

APN name: tmais+mms

APN: tmaismms

MMSC: http://mms.tmais.cv:38090

MMS proxy: 10.50.23.15

MMS port: 8080

MCC: 625

MNC: 02

APN Protocol: IPv4

2013 Cape Verde

Second day

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After breakfast we went down to the beach and the dive center to begin our advanced diver training. Turned out there was some misunderstandings with the bookings but that was nothing a little bit of discussion couldn’t sort out. Spent a couple of hours reading books about diving and so on. Then went for a walk in town to find a supermarket to get some neccessities such as beer, beer and the local brew grog.

In the evening we just strolled around in Santa Maria trying to find a decent place to eat. Ended up in some resturant and had a beer, then walked around some more and then we went home without getting a meal. We were just tired and wanted to sleep.

2013 Cape Verde

Arriving to Cape Verde (2013-03-06)

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After nine hours up in the air we finally landed on the island Sal in Cape Verde. Much warmer here than in Sweden for sure. After getting stowed onboard on a bus we went to Santa Maria, the town where we are supposed to live. After some fiddeling around and a quite strangr check-in process at the hotel we were more or less set for 7 days of vacation. The main purpose with this trip for me is to become a more “advanced” diver. I have made some arrangements with a local diving club but when we got there they had already closed for the day. Bummer!

So we went for a walk in town instead. I had expected to see more people trying to sell stuff to me but there were quite few. Sure, we got stopped every now and then by people from the mainland who had opened shops and what not. After some 30 mins of walking we decided we wanted to eat so we turned down towards the beach and pretty soon we hit a resturant called Angela’s. Got us a meal consisting of todays fish, some fries and rice for 650 escudos or 6€. Adding in two beers and you hit 850 escudos or almost a whopping 8€. Something tells me we’re coming back for this place. Quite a difference in price from the hotel bar where you pay 500 escudos for one beer. Oh well, lesson learned and conclusion of the day is: This was not to shabby for our first hours in Cape Verde.

2013 Cape Verde

Tomorrow is the day when…

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… we finally leave (the not so cold anymore) Sweden for some warmer place. Cape Verde is a good place to go we heard. Packed our bags we did. Left a note at work telling everyone we’re not there anymore we did! Kissed our mothers good bye we did. Now it’s just waiting left.

We leave tomorrow at 8:25 am. Landing on the island of Sal, Cape Verde is planned around 3:20 pm local time. So let’s see what this african country off of the coast has to offer! Now it’s time to go to bed, busy day tomorrow!

 

2013 Cape Verde

Planning for Cape Verde

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Today is the 14th of February which means it’s Stupid Cupid day or Valentine’s Day. But it is also planning day for my upcoming trip to Cape Verde.

So, I started working with a project somewhere in September last year and I knew from the start that it would be over sometime early this winter. I figured the project would be quite intense and that I could use some vacation after that. I was right! The first month of this year I’ve spent more time at work than at home. February looks to be full of work too.

Anyway. Why Cape Verde? Well, first of all I was thinking I wanted to go some place sunny which can be nice at this time of the year. We do not see the sun so much here in Sweden during the winter.

Cape Verde has always been interesting, this small group of islands off of the African coast. I was actually considering going to Cape Verde last year but I decided for my roundtrip in Africa instead. Some other places I looked into was Dubai, Gran Canaria or possibly Senegal/Gambia. None of these places felt as a good choice.

Another thing that made me think of Cape Verde was the relatively short flight time (about 9 hours) to get there. I was looking at places where I might find sun and stuff and things to do would be somewhat cheap. I had an idea that the trip should not cost me more than 10000 SEK, which equals about 1150€ or 1570$.

Anyway. I found both a flight and hotel for more or less 9000SEK total. I found this through one of the major charter companies in Sweden which surprised me. I thought I would find it cheaper on my own but finding a roundtrip flight that was cheap and didn’t include lots of switching planes at airports around Europe proved to be hard. Specially if you wanted the travelling time to be somewhat durable too. I also found it hard to find a hotel that was cheap and wasn’t located in the middle of nothing.

So, I ended up flying charter and living in an all inclusive hotel for cheaper than finding it on my own. And it’s located right at the beach with the diving company right outside. Speaking of diving, I needed something to do in Cape Verde and since the islands are quite barren islands there is probably not so much to do inland as there is to do in the sea. And prices on diving and diving courses are quite fair in my opinion so I made a decision. I’m going to upgrade myself to Advanced Open Water which should open up for some more interesting dives in the future.

Another reason to go there is the supposedly cheap seafood and local beverages!