Zorawar Purohit talks about giving up a his job as an analyst to becoming a scuba diving instructor at DiveINDIA in the Andamans.
Tell us about yourself?
Born into an Army family, I grew up travelling across the country and on a few occasions abroad as well. Shifting through schools, places and interactions has more or less given me my aptitude for the outdoors and has in many ways led to what I do today.
When did you learn scuba diving?
I started diving on July 18, 2012 with basic open water course and then moved on to advanced, rescue diver, emergency first responder and dive master internship. Later, I worked as a DM for 6 months before enrolling myself in the instructor training course.
Did you face any difficulties while learning scuba diving?
It is not difficult at all. Let me give you an example. To cycle is very simple when we look at it today. But when we tried learning it in the initial days, it was quite the task.
Diving is similar. To adapt to a whole new environment, especially one where we don`t belong biologically is some hard work to start with. But the further you go, the better adventures it gives you with fewer struggles.
How did you get interested in scuba diving?
After graduation, I decided to put myself in a corporate setup and decided to work as an analyst and content developer for a start-up.
I had an excellent bout for 10 months where I learnt many things that will stay with me for long. Anyhow, it was clear by now that I wanted something a little more satisfying on a daily basis. Hence I landed in diving. For it appeared to fit my zeal for the outdoors, projected possibilities of travelling and on a daily basis allowed exploring the unknown. And here I am.
When and how did you become a Scuba Diving instructor?
During my stint as a DM I got a very good feel of what I was in for. The professional future, broader view of the diving industry and where India and Indians stand in it today.
Another factor was being comfortable with the idea of facilitating this experience for others while keeping all safety and fun parameters alive.
Overall I concluded I want this lifestyle and hence the way to take it further was to become an instructor.
What`s the most spectacular thing you have seen while scuba diving?
I have had the luck of seeing some intense creatures and sights. I have witnessed the movement of schools of full grown (3.5 m) eagle rays, a manta ray, sting rays, sharks and mantis shrimps.
I have also had the opportunity to dive at a 1940`s ship wreck and many other enchanting dive sites in the Andaman Sea. To top it all though is a ribbon eel that I saw on a night dive.
What do you do in the non-peak season?
We take a break. Working on an island means everyone around is on a vacation except the dive team. So non-peak season is when we take turns to go home, catch up with the urban life.
It is important to give the body and mind some rest for it is an intense experience on a daily basis.
Are people more interested in scuba diving now than say about 10 years ago?
Indeed. At Dive INDIA, where I work, international clients and tourists have always been hooked to diving. But as I have gathered from my seniors and others, the number of Indians arriving each year has been doubling for half a decade now. The idea of spending on an experience rather than on material is slowly catching wind.
Any advice you want to give to students who wish to pursue the profession?
Just dive. All you need is basic swimming/floating skills and the drive for an adventure. A world unseen awaits all of you. There is gravity to each dive. To go down in the middle of the sea has its challenges. But your two best friends down there to solve everything, your breath and your calmness.