[LMB] OT: cave diving

A. Marina Fournier saffronrose at me.com
Wed Aug 21 08:15:23 BST 2019


On Aug 20, 2019, at 2:46 AM, anmar Caver <anmar.mirza at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
> On Tue, Aug 20, 2019 at 2:26 AM A. Marina Fournier <saffronrose at me.com>
> wrote:
> 
>> I always think of Anmar, our expert on caves and cave diving, when I set
>> articles like this.
> One aspect of her article I find particularly true: most cave divers I
> know are very risk-averse. You don't last long in a field with such small
> margin for error unless you are methodical and cautious.

I should think so!

> People always assume that I enjoy adrenaline dumps, but I don't, I hate
> them and avoid them whenever I can. In my world, adrenaline dump means
> something has gone very wrong.*

I have met adrenaline junkies, and regret that some are in positions of power they abuse to get that rush.

> Caving itself, when following the basic safety guidelines, is very safe.
> The real danger comes from either ignoring or short circuiting those
> guidelines, or the fact that when something does go wrong you can't easily
> get help so you have to be wildly self-sufficient.

Knowing your limits, and accepting them, is another requirement. 
For me, it is not heights alone which scare me: it’s the *falling from* them that does. Parachuting and paragliding epitomize the situation in which I hope never to be. Unfortunately, I fall more often—tripping over something or due to vertigo or other loss of balance. I didn’t like it when I was young, but now it carries additional penalties.

Being in an unknown constricted space with no light increases my heart rate, blood pressure, and  anxiety level. 
For instance, I should not have gone into the SF Exploratorium’s Tactile Dome (https://www.exploratorium.edu/visit/tactile-dome) at a friend’s birthday celebration. I was unable to take advantage of its delights.

I had to concentrate on breathing, reminding myself there was a way out, that if I really flipped out, staff could get to me externally. There was one spot where I had to get the person behind to push my bum because my legs were too short (and my bum too big for that spot) to go farther.

I could not let myself go into a full panic attack inside as it was A Really Bad Idea. Hence the breathing exercise, and a bit of a meltdown once I left that tunnel.

> *I am not a cave diver, the limits of my cert are advanced open water and
> rescue diver. I'm not allowed to go cave diving until I am 65 per an
> agreement with my spice.

I couldn’t remember whether you dived in caves, I just knew you were very knowledgeable about it.

A. Marina Fournier
Valley of Heart’s Delight, CA
saffronrose at me.com
sent from iFionnghuala


More information about the Lois-Bujold mailing list