By Matthew Bitz
Perhaps one of the hardest things about Montana's winters is that at this time of year there isn't anywhere we can go around here to get warm. It's always cold, cold when we get up in the morning and cold at night when we crank up the furnace before we go to bed. As a matter of fact, I'm cold right now as I write this article that you are reading.
And, inevitably, when we get stuck indoors, we get bored. I cannot begin to count the times that I have gotten bored out of my mind in the dead of winter. So, I am offering a simple solution: Go someplace warm.
All right, I admit, it may not be the cheapest thing to do at this time of year, but I don't see how you can afford not to. Think about it -- lying on the beach underneath the gently swaying palms, soaking up the warm, tropical sun, all the while planning your next excursion into the amazing beauty of the reefs. Imagine soaring weightless through the silent majesty of the deep; wonder at the graceful majesty of the many inhabitants of the ocean and explore their mysteries. ... It's great.
Trust me. I was doing just that over Christmas break in Hawaii, and, when I got back, I decided to write to you about it.
If you aren't familiar with scuba, it stands for Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus. It has been around now for quite a while and is immensely popular all over the world. If you are someplace warm that has palm trees, I can almost guarantee that there will be scuba diving nearby.
If you are interested in diving, then I would recommend trying an introductory dive. If you don't have any major health problems and can swim a stroke or two, you most likely won't have any trouble getting in. Intro dives are very simple.
In fact, they are how I got started diving. All you are required to do is take a 20-minute briefing at the dive shop, complete a few rudimentary skills with your gear, and you're in the water.
Hopefully, you enjoyed your time underwater and are now ready to take a class and get certified. Well, congratulations, you have discovered the marvelous world of diving. Like so many others, you have discovered a great and fascinating new sport that you will enjoy for a long time to come.