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Current Upwellings

Last updated November 20, 2000

The Latest Dive News

528 Page 2001 Travelin' Diver's Chapbook Coming Soon
Maui Tigers
Air Aruba Shuts Down
Cayman Banking Records No Longer So Private
Don't Let the Flu Ruin Your Diving
Solomon Troubles Continue
Don't Wait Too Long to Visit Indonesia's Coral Reefs
Special Offer to Undercurrent Readers from Ocean Realm
Holiday Gifts from Undercurrent

528 Page 2001 Travelin' Diver's Chapbook Coming Soon November 20 , 2000

For our print subscribers, I want to note that the 2001 Travelin' Diver's Chapbook is at the printer and will be mailed to all Undercurrent mail subscribers in mid December. We'll also be putting that up on our website for access by Undercurrent Online Members a bit later. This year's edition, which serves as the November/December issue, is a whopping 528 pages of resort and live-aboard reviews. If you're not a subscriber or Online Member and want to get the Chapbook, you can start your subscription or membership right here.

 

Maui Tigers November 20, 2000

Seems that just about yearly someone in Hawaii gets chomped on by a shark, and this year it was a California tourist snorkeling a half mile off Maui, near the town of Olowalu. Henrietta Musselwhite, 56, was bitten in the back and leg, then rescued by her daughter and a friend who were kayaking nearby. Officials believe she was attacked by a tiger shark 6 to 8 feet long.

Air Aruba Shuts Down November 20, 2000

If you're planning to travel to Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao, you may face new obstacles. Air Aruba, financially strapped, shut down in late October, leaving 1,200 tourists stranded. The U.S. subsequently suspended its license to fly to America. That leaves the highly unreliable ALM in the driver's seat.

Cayman Banking Records No Longer So Private November 20, 2000

One way Americans take advantage of offshore banking secrecy laws is to open a bank account with cash, then use the local BankCard for transactions against that account. The cash is laundered and the expenditure is untraceable. No more. In a sweeping tax evasion probe, the IRS was granted access to thousands of MasterCard and American Express credit card accounts held by U.S. taxpayers in the Cayman Islands, the Bahamas, and Antigua and Barbuda. Investigators want to look at such things as car, boat and airline ticket purchases and hotel and car rentals. I trust you're not one of the folks with such an account.

Don't Let the Flu Ruin Your Diving November 20, 2000

I've made it a practice for years to get a flu shot because the last thing I want to have happen is to get infected on a jammed overseas flight and spend my dive vacation in a live-aboard bunk. I witnessed three of my fellow travelers blow half a week in Fiji in bed and I've sworn it won't happen to me. Nor, should it happen to you.

Solomon Troubles Continue November 20, 2000

The Solomon Islands may be getting back to normal. A peace agreement has been reached between rival militias, leading to October celebrations in the streets. The Bilikiki live-aboard boats are operating again and American divers are returning. The U.S. State Department said it "applauds the signing...of a peace agreement between warring ethnic militias," but on November 3 issued a travel advisory urging U.S. citizens to defer travel to the Solomons "due to continued ethnic violence between rival militant groups and a general breakdown in law and order in the capital, Honiara." The possibility of continued violence remains high. There is no effective police force in Honiara, which has contributed to a serious breakdown in law and order. At present, unrest on Guadalcanal has not spread to other provinces in the Solomon Islands. American citizens who choose to remain in the area should exercise extreme caution and are urged to register with the U.S. Consular Agent in Honiara -- c/o BJS Agencies on Mendana Avenue in Honiara, telephone (677) 27429, fax (677)23426, e-mail keithieusa@solomon.com.sb.

Don't Wait Too Long to Visit Indonesia's Coral Reefs November 20, 2000

That's a good reason to consider Indonesia as a destination, especially since half the once vast coral reefs that surrounded the world's largest archipelago have been lost and may all be dead in another generation. Indonesia's Maritime Affairs Minister told hundreds of scientists at an international coral reef symposium that many reefs had been devastated by poor fishing practices, including the use of explosives and poisons. However, he went on to say that industrialized countries must also accept responsibility for damage caused by global warming. Unless drastic steps are taken to reverse the warming trend and curb pollution, all reefs will be dead within 20 years, scientists said.

Special Offer to Undercurrent Readers from Ocean Realm November 20, 2000

One thing I've always noted about Ocean Realm magazine is that every photograph is in fact art. They present remarkable images. One of their sidelines, however, is a fine gift collection now offered online. It's a good place to shop for that favorite diver of yours. The publishers asked if we'd give their collection a mention, but I said only if I could give our readers a special deal. Good enough, they said, so they told me that if your purchases from their online catalog total $200 or more, they'll give you a snazzy pewter Hammerhead key chain -- a $14.95 value -- in addition to a FREE one year subscription to Ocean Realm (or extend four issues to you if you already subscribe). The only hitch is that you must mention that you're an Undercurrent reader -- just put the word "Undercurrent" in the comments section of your order. Spending that much isn't difficult if you go for some of their fine art and jewelry, but there are also books, jewelry, videos, and other gift items. Visit http://store.yahoo.com/ocean-realm for the shopping. If you are unfamiliar with Ocean Realm, which has a focus unlike any other dive magazine, visit http://www.oceanrealm.net for a preview.

Holiday Gifts from Undercurrent November 20, 2000

Speaking of gifts, note that you can easily give your favorite dive buddy a subscription to the Undercurrent newsletter or an Undercurrent Online Membership this holiday season. Or perhaps some of our favorite diving related books -- you'll brighten their holiday season with any of these.

-- Ben Davison, publisher

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