Nun-Chucks, Penguin Jokes, and the Spinny Thing

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Date: February 7-16, 2006
Destination: Bligh Triangle, Fiji
Returning Passengers: Kandy Kendall, Ann Beisser, Jane Titley


Robust ghost pipefish, courtesy of Captain Johnathan.
Back for more of Fiji's finest diving, Kandy Kendall and Ann Beisser.
NAI'A's Jane Titely, at the Window of Dreams, Namena.


Nice to be back after a month of R&R for the boat and crew, the old girl looking like new after the usual January re-fit. A small group was treated to the most beautiful of Fiji’s colourful reefs and inhabitants … despite a rather worrying “spinny thing” marring the weather map in nearby Tonga. Typical of this time of year, warm water and calm seas were the norm – and with the unusually clear water, this group had the best of all worlds.


Juvenile bicolour parrotfish.
Magic Mushrooms, Namena.
Flabellina nudibranch.


Bar tricks, nun-chucking and the unending quest for pymgy seahorses kept the group upbeat and diving hard 'til the very end of the trip. Kandy Kendall joined us for her eleventh NAI’A adventure, likewise Ann Beisser and Jane Titley (our USA connection) made themselves comfortable in their home away from home. Kandy racked up plenty of footage for her upcoming underwater production, Ann worked hard to master her new digital camera rig, while Jane soaked up the underwater sights unencumbered.


Emmy Ibison & Dave Grace.
Emmy & Dave at Kansas.
Blue ribbon eel.


The rest of the motley crew was made up of friends from dive trips past. Dave Grace celebrated his half century, now too old to blow out the candles. Two days later and another double dessert was on the table, this time for the anniversary of Dave and his missus, Emmy Ibison. Emmy was the undisputed dive-aholic, never passing up the opportunity to splash. Barbara Benninghoff got the darkest suntan, Ian McCain moved carefully into the world of underwater photography (nice fins, mate), resisting the urge to actually buy a camera, and Phyl Dahl managed to wrestle her camera away from her fella just enough to capture some shots of her own.


Red whips.
Phyl Dahl & Ian McCain.
Charlie's Gardens.



NAI’A and crew are everything we heard about, and more! Who would have guessed that Josh would be a wealth of bar tricks? Thanks for the perfect vacation! (…not to mention the surprise birthday and anniversary cakes!)
Emmy Ibison & Dave Grace
Missoula, MT

Another fabulous trip aboard NAI’A! I’ve been doing these trips with you for ten years and they are still The Best! Thanks for all you do.
Kandy Kendall
Scottsdale AZ

To the fabulous NAI’A crew: Thanks for a memorable trip! I don’t know which was tops – the extraordinary food, overall crew help, singing kava parties, wonderful videos, underwater world education, ultra-calm diving, no-worry attitudes, the never-ending smiles, wonderful weather punctuated by a sudden squall… the list goes on. Kudos to Josh and Liz, the crew and Captain Johnathan. My best ever!
Phyl Dahl,
Great Falls VA

Many thanks for saving my trip with the antibiotics and fixing my equipment problems. You are all the best and I thank you all so very much. Greatest affection,
Ann Beisser
Scottsdale AZ

The best trip ever! It’s great when the friendly crew outnumbers the guests! Thanks to Josh and Liz as well, and don’t forget the penguin/seal joke! Thanks to everyone for making this a once in a lifetime adventure.
Ian McCain
Washington DC


Orange-spotted shrimpgoby.
Greasy grouper.
Barbara Benningholf.
Cat's Meow.
Jane Titley.