Who is Charles?

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Hello, there. I’m Charles.

I have never written a blog before, but I figure now is the time start.

I run a scuba diving outfit in Vanuatu.  Look at the water above.

Never heard of Vanuatu? That’s okay. Most of the world hasn’t either.

Vanuatu is an island in the south Pacific. The closest place to it that you have probably have heard of is Fiji.

Most people who come to Vanuatu fly in via Fiji, or they come in on a cruise ship.

So I have a scuba outfit here. You would be amazed at how much business there is.

I get a lot of tourist business. Quite a bit of it comes from Australia and New Zealand, specifically for scuba diving the shipwrecks.

We have 76 wrecks around Vanuatu. Many of these are World War II ships that went down in some of the major battles that were fought over this island nation.

We also have wicked storms in this part of the world. The storms have ended the lives of many a ship, which have gone down in the waters around these islands. It sucked for the ships, but it sure makes a great scuba diving playground.

Like I said, I have clients that come from Australia and New Zealand. I also have clients that come from other parts of the world. Vanuatu has gotten quite the reputation for being a diving hotspot, particularly for those who are I interested in a wreck diving.

So I decided to start this blog to catalog some of the stories connected with my scuba diving business and about life in general on these islands.

Vanuatu was formerly a French colony. Before it gained its independence it was called the New Hebrides.

So there is a heavy French influence here evidenced in the menu selection at local restaurants, the names of the people, and of course the fact that French is one of the main languages spoken.

The other language of common use is Bislama, which is considered a trade language. That is, it was originally used between people of different language groups as a simple common language of communication that they could use when they were trading goods with each other.

Now it’s not used so much for trade as it is just a common language.

As islands go it’s a typical South Pacific paradise. You’ve got the palm trees, the white sand beaches, the sweeping coves, the sparkling blue waters, the coral reefs filled with spectacular multicolored fish, and inland, the lush rain forest.

Typically, the clients that come on scuba diving expeditions will also spend a day or two exploring the island.

They will rent a jeep and drive around the main island. Sometimes some of them will charter a small airplane or get on an island hopper and go visit the other islands that make up this country.

There are a couple of fine resorts here in the capital city of Port Vila.

The resorts are world-class and yet not obnoxiously opulent. Guests can stay in small air-conditioned cabanas with thatched roofs. They are simple and yet have the finest amenities that guests have come to expect from resorts worldwide.

Typically, my clients are fun, energetic and boisterous. They are generally not too stuck on themselves. They have a great respect for the ocean, a desire for adventure and appreciation for history. I like my clients overall.