Monday, October 27, 2008
It is that time of year again! Time to fill my Christmas list with dive destinations I can’t wait to visit and new gear sure to make a diving technophile excited! And most importantly, catch up with those folks that I rarely get to see – some only at Dema.
Dema is the industry’s largest diving trade-only exhibition. This year, I attended as a Shark Saver and for the Underwater Channel.
It was great to catch up with everyone – especially the Shark Angel Team… We were just short one Angel. Sadly Alison couldn’t make it – busy finishing her phD, making her wedding plans, kicking off two new research initiatives, and entertaining the plethora of media that flocks to her. Come on Alison, is that all????
It was so great to have the gang back together again, at least for a short while. Then everyone was off to their separate parts of the planet: Kim to launch Whale Wars and then hold down the fort while the Shepherds head to the Antarctic, Shawn to head Asia and film for Wild Aid, Eric to get ready to join the 2009 Sea Shepherd Whaling Campaign as the official photographer. What an incredible bunch of passionate people I am so fortunate to call my friends.
And a great way to spend time with fellow Shark Saver director, Jamie Pollack. Jamie and I spent hours planning our China campaign. And searching the floor for sponsors! (Well, mostly Jamie. She rocks at it.)
My must haves from the show? Oceanic’s new dive computer, the sexy, sleek silvery-blue material from Yamamoto for a new open-cell freediving suit (that would bring my total up to 9 new suits this year… 2 custom from Elios, 1 from Fourth Element, 1 from custom Free Divers,1 from Billabong, and 3 custom from Coral Wetsuits – yes, I do have a small shopping problem and my love for great shoes/handbags has now been replaced with a burning desire to purchase the perfect wetsuit), oh and a small ticket item… a Sony EX1 with a Gates Housing and Fathom lens. The perfect stocking stuffer.
As a presenter for the Underwater Channel, I had a chance to interview scads of folks – including the president of Padi, SSI, DAN, and Dema. But my personal favorite? That would have to be Neptunic SharkSuits. They are so tough and cool – I love their products and the company, which is equally edgy and hip. This year, I finally had an opportunity to meet Jeremiah Sullivan – the founder as well – which I must admit, I geeked out a bit on… You can see it all at: http://www.theunderwaterchannel.tv/blog/dema-special/
Sadly, I had to settle with another Neptunic t-shirt purchase though to add to my growing collection. I am just not ready to take on the price tag for the suit (they used to be $14k custom built, but now they have a much more affordable model on the market) on a conservationists’ salary. I know I don’t NEED it, but since when is a purchase driven by need? Not for any gal who has lived in Manhattan! But I can still dream… The ultimate suit to add to my collection.
Maybe next year…