What a knockout weekend. Stopped at Jonathan's Friday night for a collaborative dinner (variations on mac and cheese... fantastic results). Didn't get on the road until 11pmish; got into a hotel in Federal Way around 2:30am thanks to bad road conditions due to rain and pooling.
The point of that late night trip was to be a few minutes away from Redondo in the morning, and not 4.5 hours! Arrived around 9:20, got the last parking spot in the front part of the lot which was filled almost entirely w/ club divers. Awesome! The rain stopped and the clouds parted early in the morning for us and made way for gorgeous skies and enough sun that I'm burnt!
Met so many people I don't remember them all, but highlights were two new dive buddies I hope to share the waters with again, Kriss and Tami. Got a chance to talk to Bob again, and met Lynne finally. Put faces to many screen names, and there's certainly a few I'd like to talk with a lot more! Not to play favorites or anything, but I'd have to say the hilight was meeting John Rawlings. Oogled his gear, stood by quietly and listened to some conversations, and was wrapped in a big hug as I left. There's a guy with some great energy.
Viz was fantastic, the experience was the polar opposite of our visit two weeks ago! Calm waters, excellent viz... 30 ft (plus in some parts, minus in others). I took a few okay shots, but my favorite, of the grunt sculpin, didn't turn out. Saw one octo, and heard of a juvenile wolf eel hanging around. Bob has a fantastic photo of him. Two great dives that included dealing with a lost fin and some beyond basic underwater communication with my buddy.
The best part? I was warm AND dry! New undergarments made a wonderful improvement. It's still less than what many would dive (a White's MK0 and MK1 w/ thick socks) it left me feeling pretty toasty. The drysuit even fit BETTER I would swear. Niiiiiiice.
Great people, good food, great dives... and even a PUPPY! How much better could it get!?