Editorial 107

Editorial by Dave Moran

Jean-Michel Cousteau – 0800 See Orca – Internet Shopping

In recent weeks I had the pleasure of spending time exchanging communications with Dr Ingrid Visser, the founder and driving force behind New Zealand’s Orca Research Trust. She has been assisting Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ocean Adventures expedition team (which is a section within his Ocean Futures Society) in their quest to film Orca in PNG and New Zealand.

Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ocean Adventures are in a co-production with US based PBS station, KQED to produce the seventh documentary in the series, Jean-Michel Cousteau Ocean Adventures. Ingrid and her orca research will feature within this documentary.

I have always known that Ingrid is very dedicated to her work, some would say obsessed with it. Just as I was trying to catch up with Ingrid and Jean-Michel for an interview a young female orca stranded itself on a west coast beach. So the interview was postponed – an orca needed help.

For those of you who live in New Zealand you would have felt the freezing winter blasts that have swept the country in recent times – real brass monkey weather! Over the next few days from the comfort of a warm office or car I communicated with Ingrid as she assisted the orca.

At times the Auckland Harbour was a slice of Antarctica – no place for any human! But Ingrid was out there with the Cousteau team.

As the rescue entered its hopefully final stage on the evening of Sunday 6 July and the chill of the night extinguished any ember of heat and light, I gazed out into the harbour – there was just one vessel’s twinkling navigation lights. I picked up my cell phone – Ingrid replied, ‘Orca Hotline, Ingrid speaking’. I felt like saying

Mate it’s time to head home for a warm shower

‘How’s it going out there?’ Ingrid replied ‘Fine, we are getting this orca sorted – it’s been a long day!’

I could not help but admire this lady. She has guts and an unbreakable determination that is a rare quality in people these days.I asked her, ‘How did Jean-Michel cope with the conditions over the last couple of days?’ ‘Dave he’s amazing. He was in his element, on the water doing what he loves. I hope I’m able to do that when I’m 70!’

I’m sure that I speak for many of our readers when I say, ‘Thank God there are people such as Ingrid and Jean-Michel who live by the saying:

When the going gets tough the tough get going.

Congratulations to you both and your support teams, we appreciate your hard work which does: Make a difference.

Ingrid is very keen to keep track of the young orca so if you’re out on the water or strolling a beach and you see a single orca or a group phone: 0800seeorca (0800 733 6722). See star letter to Editor on page eight.

Internet shopping is encroaching daily on the sales made in traditional bricks and mortar retail stores. Your local dive store is not escaping this trend. Most dive shop owners have a common tale to tell. A person comes into their shop, tries on all the gear, then walks out. On a future dive trip that person turns up using new equipment that they have bought online. Maybe saving themselves a few 10 dollar bills. These same people still expect the dive shop to service that gear, test and fill their scuba cylinders, arrange dive trips etc. Use the shop’s pool if they have one. All very convenient!

To provide all these services a dive shop owner has to be prepared to work long hours, write a monthly overheads cheque then hopefully have enough to pay themselves! Next time you are considering buying online think about all the services your local dive shop provides and the inconvenience it would cause you if they were no longer just down the road.

A healthy dive industry provides many advantages for divers in many different ways. It is definitely in your interest to support your local dive shop.

Think about it – support your local – they are there to support you too.

During New Zealand’s winter we experience some of our best diving due to the clarity of the water. Grab a few mates and take the plunge to experience it! Winter is also a good time to have your gear serviced and by doing so you will miss that crazy pre-summer rush.

Continue to support your local dive shop, they’re as important as the air you breathe!

Dave Moran

scroll to top