After working in the hotel industry for eight years, Jimmy Mistry quit his job as sales and marketing manager with a reputed hotel in Mumbai a few years ago, having decided to follow his dream of being a scuba diving instructor. He’d been keen to explore a career in extreme sports and adventure. In December 2016, Mistry, 29, took a break from work and visited Goa and tried scuba diving himself.
Mistry says the word scuba speaks for itself, standing for self contained underwater breathing apparatus. “My first experience told me this is what I enjoy,” Mistry said. From Goa, Mistry went to the Andaman for a few more dives and then returned to his job at a five-star hotel. “After returning to my job, I gave my resignation to achieve my dream of becoming a professional diver,” Mistry said, adding that he went to Thailand to train at the Princess Divers Institute. After training in the waters off Thailand, Mistry started working there as an instructor. “I trained myself and started working there for two seasons, from April to December 2017,” he said. “I have been an instructor for more than 100 people from South East Asia.”
From Thailand, Mistry flew to South Africa for more exposure as a commercial diver. Mistry said, “I have been in South Africa for the last three months getting my commercial diving licence from a professional centre. I am a 50-metre surface supply air diver.” Mistry is currently an instructor with the Scuba School International.
Mistry says Mumbaiites who want to explore scuba diving can go to Tarkarli in Konkan, or Goa. In the Andaman, a five-day course is offered. “It is not necessary that the person will learn in five days. One cannot give a guarantee… it depends upon individual performance,” Mistry said.
Mistry says his job as instructor is to take people under water and help them work with their breathing apparatus. “I train them on maintaining their breath and experiencing the best world under water.” Mistry says even those who cannot swim can dive for diving requires only to drift with the current. Mistry has also done about 100 dives off the Durban harbour and worked with different tools on different underwater tasks.
About his future plans, Mistry says he wants to start a facility in Goa to welcome experienced divers to dive in the waters off Goa.