I ARRIVED A BIT EARLY in Munda, a town in the Solomon Islands’ Western Province. I checked into the Agnes
Gateway Hotel, then walked the short distance under triple-canopy tropical shade from my cabana to SIDE Dive
Munda, behind the check-in building. Although my dive booking was not until the following day, I was eager to get
under water ASAP, if at all possible.
“I think one of the divers has opted out of diving this afternoon,” divemaster Jos Smulders said promisingly. “You’re
welcome to join us if that’s the case – I’ll know for sure after lunch.”
I gave Jos my cabana number and asked him if he would drop by to let me know, one way or another. Then I headed
to the adjacent hotel restaurant patio to order lunch, before heading back to my digs to prepare my kit.
Between bites of delicious grilled reef fish and UK-quality chips, I carefully assembled cameras, strobes and other
requisite paraphernalia before lying down for a quick cat-nap.
Author: MARK B HATTER