Ok, ok, we know it’s already half way through January, but we wanted to take the record for the most delayed New Years greeting ever. So, now we have explained ourselves, we`d like to take this opportunity to wish you all a happy and prosperous 2017. Hopefully we will see lots more of you all this year, as you join us on the many Dhow and Fast Boat trips which are scheduled to run.
You will have noticed that we have been a bit quiet on the blog and web pages over the last few months. We do sincerely apologise for this, however we hope you will agree that it was all in a good cause. Wondering what we are on about now? Read on……….
We took the decision in 2016 to rebrand the company to best reflect our services. Our previous logo was very clever and for those of you who studied it, you would have noticed a dhow, an anchor and a sting ray in the design, with the sea part of the logo meaning Sheesa Beach in Arabic. However, at first glance, it did not speak to us (nor I suspect many of you) about who we are.
After getting our heads together with some seriously amazing branding guru’s (who just happen to be avid divers too), we came to the conclusion that a change to our website and logo, along with smarter use of social media was the way to go. We also felt it was important to differentiate between Sheesa Beach Dhow Cruises and Sheesa Beach Dive Centre (which we felt had, up to now been confusing). Hopefully you will agree that it is now clear that the Company is Sheesa Beach Dhow Cruises and with the addition of the slogan ‘Dive and Discover’ on the new logo and website, newcomers will quickly ‘get what we do’.
After a lot of hard work by a lot of people, we are extremely proud to launch the new website which, is fast, crisp and provides key information at the click of your mouse. Our social media has also expanded a bit by adding in an Instagram account (sheesabeachdhow) and changing our Face Book page to Sheesa Beach Dhow Cruises – Dive and Discover. On the homepage of the website, you will find easily accessible icons to all our social media accounts, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and of course our blog, Sheesa Shenanigans.
Actually, talking about our social media brings us to a point that we feel is important to talk about. Those of you who follow the blog may have noticed the humorous content that we infused into the articles. This isn’t difficult as the humour and fun emanating from the blog is, we believe, reflective of the experience that we feel many of our customers enjoy on our trips. We can however be serious, and at times it is important to be so. Diving is a dangerous sport and it is essential that we sometimes remind ourselves of this. On that note, we would like to talk about a slightly more serious side of the relationship between diving and social media.
I recently read an article on how social media can cause death on dive trips. A shocking view point maybe, however it rings very true. We are continually bombarded with fantastic underwater images of dive sites, live aboards, resorts, divers personal experiences and so forth. We fail to understand that many of those fantastic images were the result of 100 dives done in some really testing conditions, before the perfect snap was loaded onto the world-wide web. We also age! This unfortunately means we cannot do some of those great current dives with big pelagics anymore due to our aging cardio-vascular system. Those pics however paint a false or at least, a deceiving truth.
This also brings us (as dive guides) to the very painful truth of “No, you cannot always have it your own way.” When a diver books a dive trip with us, they are booking in a personal capacity and as such, the focus of their dives are the same – for personal gain. We as guides take a different view, as we choose a site based on the weakest (not a word I prefer to use, however we are being realistic now) diver in the group. We dive for a group and you dive as an individual. Those of you who have done numerous trips with us will know this and happily, most of our regular customers are happy with this approach. Particularly as we strive hard to ensure that the sites we choose have options to suit all levels. Thus, when we do place restrictions for safety reasons, be it weather, capability of the wider group, etc., our guests, are on the whole, extremely understanding.
It was interesting the other evening as a few of us (yes, we have a social life here) sat around having a couple of toots, discussing this very topic. There was one group who were very pro letting the client select an alternative dive, after a dive site had been briefed and selected. Such as “we dived this site last week and want to go there instead.” Now this isn’t always possible, however, it can be done within reason:-
Do the conditions allow?
Is everyone in agreement?
How much of a deviation from the original dive plan is it?
Is everyone equipped/configured to do the dive?
Ultimately however, whether we stick to the original site or go with the alternative suggestion, the golden rule is plan your dive and dive your plan. Even if the plan is slightly newer than the original one.
We are as always, happy to be flexible, striving to ensure you get the best experience, best service and most enjoyable time from your weekend as our guest. However, do please always bear in mind that we are there for your safety, not just your enjoyment. So, whilst we are more than happy to consider a suggestion or request to deviate, we will sometimes, politely but firmly say no. And when we do, it is always with good reason which, (if you are interested) we are happy to share.
For all of us, another days diving is another day diving education, no matter how experienced we already are. That’s what makes our sport so refreshing and exciting. We hope you agree!