How it all started:
It all started on a 20km² small island called Koh Tao. The island itself used to be the secret top spot for relaxed backpackers with ideal conditions for scuba diving in the Gulf of Thailand. The word spread quickly and more tourists came, more bungalows and way more dive shops opened up and the dive community on the island grew and grew. Now with about 50 to 60 different dive shops it is THE hot spot to learn scuba diving, with no other place on earth certifying more new divers each year.
With all those new dive shops came more jobs and with those, more “professional” diver who chose to stay to life & work on this once secret hideout. For every 10 new people that arrived one of the old and “good” ones seemed to leave. With each of the “oldies” or “pioneers” leaving this original feeling or spirit started to fade away. Smaller individual groups and cliques formed out of the ones much smaller and more united group of dive bums.
Beside the job, what everyone on the island did have in common was a scooter or motorbike.
Within our group the idea of publicly displaying our unity and brotherhood formed quickly. At first it was jokes at a bar about forming a Motorcycle Club and instead of wearing patches on heavy leather jackets we were thinking of patches on Board-Shorts and Wetsuits. But Honda Sonics and Waves, which most of us were riding, didn’t actually fit the part of a Motorcycle Club (MC) so the idea transformed into being a Dive Club (DC). But one with patches! The Sons of the Sea!
The first Sons of the Sea T-Shirts were printed and only a close group of colleagues and like-minded scuba diving enthusiasts got to wear them. We went on trips together, and started wearing “our colors” as much as possible even during work on different dive boats and of course when going out for a drink. It didn’t take long before more and more people started asking, even begging, if they could get a shirt as well. Our Divemasters in training were considered as Prospects and got a shirt which we promised to burn if they would not finish the course. Some of these former DMT’s even got the original patch as a tattoo. The Patch and our so called Club of scuba diving enthusiasts gained popularity.
Over time some of us moved on to new dive jobs in other countries or simply switched Islands. Like crazy barefooted, Wetsuit wearing missionaries did they carry the Patch and the idea of Sons of the Sea out into the world – which gave birth to new regional “Chapter”. For those of us that moved back home and only got to dive for a couple of weeks each year, for those with no roots to a local chapter we formed the so called NOMADS. The NOMADS Shirt is now the most popular choice for divers that actually go out an explore different locations rather than revisiting the same place.
The Picture on the right shows the full back patch.
Just like the ones from Motorcycle Clubs we chose a Three-Piece Patch but in a single print 😉
The top writing is called the TOP ROCKER and carries the name of the club or group. In our case its “Sons of the Sea”.
The center part is the clubs logo which we just call “The Wet Reaper”.
On the bottom is the so called BOTTOM ROCKER stating the location or region. In this case there is no main regional location and there for it says NOMADS, which stands for No Main Address.
On a typical three-piece back patch one can also find the letters MC which stands for Motorcycle Club. Since we decided that nether our tiny bikes nor the kilometers driven were enough to call us Bikes we went ahead and called our selves a Dive Club (DC). And that is why the “Wet Reaper” is has the letters DC printed below the hand that holds the globe.