Moments that last a lifetime in Cayman Brac
By Evan Groth Age 19
Cayman Brac Reef Resort 2018: Sharing moments of dazzling Caribbean sunsets, salty sea breezes and night skies brimming with stars brings me a nostalgia found only in the best of memories. These memories are of my first Kids Sea Camp adventure spent in Cayman Brac. Every day was spent to its fullest, and every moment was full of friendship, adventure, and peace of mind.
The underwater world is filled with silence, mystery, and grace. Throughout my first ocean dives, I found out exactly what keeps bring divers back under the waves. Strange colors, as well as the alien movements and patterns of fish, lure the mind into a state of serenity and Zen. Weightlessness and silence filled only with the most foreign of sounds envelope you in a trance and give you the impression of a stranger in a strange world. Everything is shrouded in mystery and nature truly feels as powerful as it should. These feelings lure divers into the underwater world, but Kids Sea Camp offers even more.
The president and founder of Kids Sea Camp, Margo Peyton, did the impossible by taking something that was perfect and made it greater. I arrived at the 2018 Cayman Brac week excited but a little nervous. Most of the guests had traveled to Kids Sea Camp weeks together for years and I thought I would be the stranger among them. I couldn’t have been more wrong. The atmosphere was the most welcoming I had ever felt traveling and within a day or two I felt like longtime friends with almost all the guests at the resort. When people say that Kids Sea Camp is one great family it means that it’s a place where you can bond with those around you faster than you thought possible. Not for a moment did I feel like an outsider and I got to experience diving in its maximum capacity.
I dove three times a day, starting as an PADI Open Water Diver. The instruction and care provided by the staff were unmatched, and throughout the week I achieved both my PADI Advanced Open Water and my PADI Rescue Diver certifications. As a diver I grew much faster than I thought possible in such a brief time and despite my rigorous training schedule, it didn’t feel rushed or stressful at all. I did my training and certification with other people my age all while making unforgettable friends and memories.
Kids Sea Camp changes diving from an underwater safari to and undersea fantasy world. The limit is what you can come up with. Every dive has the sightseeing and sea creatures you expect, but Kids Sea Camp adds a twist. At the end of the dives before safety stops, everyone plays around as kids should. Sandy bottoms lead to filming underwater lightsaber fights. Finger wrestling tournaments are common, as well as underwater acrobatics shows and bubble ring contests. When we get old we stop playing as much, but playing underwater feels like playing in space, something to try no matter your age.
I guess what I am saying is Kids Sea Camp has something for everyone. Whether you seek tranquility, thrill, sharks or the sparks of new friendships. Despite only being able to see each other for one week a year, it is clear all those on Kids Sea Camp are close and love each other like family. Becoming a part of that family has truly been an honor for me, and already I can’t wait for next summer. I work for Kids Sea Camp as a part-time summer employee trying to become an instructor. As a 19-year-old college student, I really think I have the best job in the world. Margo and Tom have given me an opportunity that years ago I never could have dreamed of. To travel the world diving with amazing people, there isn’t much more I could ask for.
If you are thinking about going on Kids Sea Camp for the first time, all I can say is go for it. There is nothing quite like it in the diving industry because it’s not just a company, it’s a family. It’s a place for kids to learn to dive and fall in love with the Ocean. It’s a week you will remember forever.