Sunday, 16 March 2008

Slowly moving to my new Site -


I am slowly moving to my new website

The website itself is still in construction and it is still not working but my Journal is up and running. To go to my new Journal (or blog), please bookmark the following address:

My new journal has the option to use RSS feed so that you know when new posts are included there.

Cayman Islands Photos

I just uploaded some of my photos from the Cayman Islands. To check more photos follow the link to my Flickr account or go directly to the SLIDESHOW.













Friday, 14 March 2008

Monday, 10 March 2008

Back in the Netherlands - Photos coming soon

I just got back from my trip to the Cayman Islands. I am working on the photos and will upload some very soon.

Sunday, 9 March 2008

Captain's Log already on Aggressor Website

Taken from Aggressor Website

"Saturday, March 8th, 2008 at 12:00 AM
Entry By: Alan Roberts

March 1-8, 2008 Water temp: 80f. Air temp: 85f+. Vis 100-150ft. Wet suit 3 mm full suit. Greetings once again from the beautiful Cayman Islands. Today we were joined by 18 happy guests from all over the USA and Nuno from Portugal. We were fortunate to have Ralph Neely, who played 13 years ‘America’s Team’, the Dallas Cowboys. Ralph participated in 4 Super Bowls! Wow! Also Jamie & Steph who have both recently returned safely from serving their country with the US Army in Iraq and will be getting married in the near future! Some late arrivals made sense for us to stay at the dock and leave early Sunday AM for our first dive site. Again Savio and Yanis spoiled us all with no doubt the best BBQ on the island followed by homemade cherry pie and ice cream! Yummy!

Sunday. The wind is still blowing from the Northeast, so we chose the wreck of the Doc Polson for our first site. A perfect place to check out our gear, weights and get wet. A small 70ft tugboat intentionally sunk in the early 90s makes for beautiful wide angle photography as well as a turtle, resident barracuda and a couple of eagle rays. Stingray City was the afternoon dive and again these pesky critters came looking for squid and our blood! They found both with several Stingray kisses being received along the way! We opted to get an early start for Little Cayman and started our 75 mile crossing early to give us a calm night’s sleep in LC.

Monday. Still a little bumpy on Bloody Bay so we dove the “Black Hole’ on the south side for our first dive. A crack in the reef drop down the wall exiting at 110ft. A shear wall, pillar coral and incredible vis made the bumpy crossing well worth it. Lea Lea’s Lookout on Bloody Bay Wall, is what they came for. A long crevice of the edge of the wall, the “great room”, shear wall, shark motel and plenty of reef critters. Next stop was “The Meadows” which should be named the Aquarium! Schooling jacks, groupers, reef sharks, turtles, eagle rays and a giant goliath grouper made for a fun afternoon. The night dive was awesome with all the usual suspects being present! Crabs, lobsters, squid. sharks, sleeping turtles and of course octopi!

Tuesday. Randy’s Gazebo was first. Always a highlight of the week and this was no different! The two chimneys, crevice and archway were all explored as was the shear wall and shallow reef. 3 Fathom wall was the PM site. This to me has to be one of the best sites in the Caribbean! You name it, its here. Shear wall! Shallow sands, swim thru’s, turtles, eagle rays, sharks, green eels, spotted eels, scorpion fish, blaa blaa blaa! And once again the night dive was productive with eels, crabs lobsters, crabs and of course octopi!

Wednesday. We woke to calm sea’s blue skies and a Russian warship underneath the boat. We are in Cayman Brac to dive the 356, a 300+ft Russian naval vessel which was sunk as a dive site in 1996. Two awesome dive’s were enjoyed exploring the wreck, with its many swim thru’s, engine rooms and of course the naval guns. The “Bus Stop was next back on Bloody Bay! A mini wall and shear wall with plenty of sharks, turtles, scorpion fish, and eagle rays, flounder and sail fin blennies! The night dive was again a good producer of nocturnal critters with squid, lobsters crabs and octopi being spotted.

Thursday. 9 brave souls awoke at 5.30AM for our pre-breakfast dive to watch the sunrise at 50ft! There is nothing like hot coffee and eggs benedict after a predawn dive. Nancy’s Cup of Tea was up next. 2 dives on the pinnacle with all its cleaning stations, hanging sponges, reef sharks and a couple of old anchor we think that was left by Columbus. Just kidding…..Today was Lance’s birthday and we celebrated with making him a chocolate cake! One which he will never forget! The Great wall was next! 20ft to the top 6000 ft to the bottom kinda says it all! However often we have up to 5 resident friendly groupers including “Freddie the rock star” today we had two! Freddie and Frederica and boy did they put on a show Nuno had tears in his eye’s having to leave them swimming after him all the way back to the ladders!

Friday. Where did the week go? Already we are thinking about the snow in Boston and the flights home to the USA. We still managed to enjoy our final 2 dives at Round Rock and the wreck of the Oro Verde. All that’s left is a gear wash down start packing our bags, Savio’s fabulous lunch and our evening cocktail party to say our farewells and laugh one more time and dinner onshore. Congrats to Jamie and Steph for completing their PADI Advanced and Nitrox courses and to the rest of the fun bunch for another safe week of Spring Break diving Aggressor Style!

Until next time
Captain. Alan Roberts"

Back from Cayman Islands - In Houston, Texas

What is good always ends fast. The liveaboard is over and I am on my way back to Amsterdam. At the moment staying over night in Houston, Texas. Tomorrow flying back home. In the plane it is time to work on my photos. Have great stories including a new friend I made underwater, Freddie the Giant Nassau Grouper.

Cayman Islands-5

Cayman Islands-7

Cayman Islands-9

Saturday, 1 March 2008

Grand Cayman - Dinner at Aquabeach Bar & Restaurant

Just got back from dinner at AquaBeach Bar & Restaurant, considered one of the best places with live music in the Cayman. The place was not bad at all but I was also not impressed. Food was way too much (never a bad thing). The ribs were very good. A bit pricey though.

Already in Grand Cayman

Cayman Islands-6

After a long journey, I am finally in Grand Cayman. Today I got to go for a while to the beach in front of my hotel. Water was 27 degrees celsius and there were quite some fishes near the shore.

While snorkeling I spotted a school of cuttle fish. Apparently they are not afraid of people :)

Cayman Islands-2

Cayman Islands-3

Cayman Islands-4

Friday, 29 February 2008

Leaving Atlanta... On my way to Grand Cayman

Cayman Islands-1

Gonna take a bath now and on my way the airport once more. Next stop: Grand Cayman !!!


Vou tomar um banho e lá vou eu uma vez mais no caminho do aeroporto. Promixa Paragem: Grand Cayman !!!

Finally in Atlanta / Finalmente em Atlanta

Finally got here. Now on my way to the hotel for some deserved sleep.
Tomorrow Cayman Islands.


Finalmente cheguei. Estou agora a caminho do hotel para um merecido descanso.
Amanha Cayman Islands

Thursday, 28 February 2008

Got to Newark. Waiting in the plane

I guess there is gonna be running for me. Plane is late one hour and I need
to get the next plane to Atlanta. Feel tired as I couldn't sleep.

My schedule for the Cayman Islands Dive trip

Thursday, 28th February

- Flight to Newark, NY from Amsterdam

- In Newark, flight to Atlanta, GE

- Sleep in Atlanta

Friday, 29th February

- Flight from Atlanta to Grand Cayman in the morning

- Arrival in Grand Cayman at approx. 12:00

- Stay one day visiting Grand Cayman

Saturday, 1st March

- Board the Cayman Aggressor at 14:00

- Welcome drinks and briefing from the Captain

Sunday, 2nd March - Friday, 7th March

- Dive, dive and more dive

Saturday, 8th March

- Check-out Aggressor

- 17:00 - Flight from Grand Cayman to Houston, Texas

- Stay overnight in Houston

Sunday, 9th March

- Flight from Houston to Amsterdam

Monday, 10th March

- Arrival in Amsterdam at 7:00 am

Sunday, 17 February 2008

First dive after a while...

Several months have passed since the last time I did a dive. To be more precise, since July 2007. That's a looooooong time. Not to happen again.

Well, today I went with Fred to Vinkeveense Plassen a did a short dive to get used to it... Man, that's cold... Not used to it anymore LOL

Got my housing. Big Kudos to and Mares Benelux (TopSport Diving)

S&S DX300

So finally I got my housing. This has been a very long story for which I have to thank Ron at Scubacam and to Mares Benelux (former TopSport diving) for their great service.

Please find below a short version of the story.

Last year I bought a Sea&Sea housing for my Canon EOS350D at Scubacam. Since the beginning there were issues with the TTL. Ron at Scubacam always promptly tried to solve the issue and housings, TTL converters and strobes came back and forth from Sea&Sea Japan without any success. TopSport diving at that time ordered a brand new housing to try to solve the issue and kept the "old one" in their stock. Unfortunately also this one didn't work.

In between, I had a liveaboard to Honduras. Two days before I left to Honduras one of the strobes simply died. Once more Ron when completely out of his way and immediately got me a new strobe to replace the faulty one. Since the beginning I was very pleased with the level of service provided by both companies.

Unfortunately, after a long time trying to solve the problem, the housing came once more from Japan not working properly.

ScubaCam and TopSport immediately agreed with finding a different solution since this was not working out. Specifically, they agreed to replace the S&S D350 kit for the brand new S&S MDXD300 for the Nikon D300 without any costs from my side. I just had to choose which lens kits I wanted and everything was arranged. In addition to that, for all the troubles, TopSport kindly offered me one Mares product of my choice.

I must say I am very very pleased with how this case was dealt with and must say that these two companies are an example to any company out there in terms of customer service.

For all this, THANK YOU very much.

Below a picture of me and Ron with my new housing:
Me and Ron (Scubacam)

Saturday, 16 February 2008

On my way to get my new Sea&Sea Housing

Getting out now to go to Scubacam and get my new housing. More details when I am back !!!

Saturday, 9 February 2008

Some pics from BOOT 2008 - Dusseldorf

BOOT Dusseldorf 27Jan08

BOOT Dusseldorf 27Jan08

BOOT Dusseldorf 27Jan08

BOOT Dusseldorf 27Jan08

BOOT Dusseldorf 27Jan08

BOOT Dusseldorf 27Jan08

BOOT Dusseldorf 27Jan08

New Sea&Sea DX300 housing on its way

Sea&Sea MDXD300

My Sea&Sea housing for the Canon 300D didn't work out. We were never able to make the TTL work properly. So Scubacam agreed to take this system back and get me the new Sea&Sea housing for the Nikon D300 without any additional payment. Although this whole situation has been a pain in the ass, I am extremely happy with the service provided by Scubacam and the important in the Netherlands. Thank you once more Ron... Looking forward to get my new housing !!!

When I get the housing, I will post the whole story.