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Thursday, December 26, 2019

Family Circus, Drama And Politics

I have been absent from the blog a while now, haven’t written anything and suddenly I just got these random thoughts popping in my head and a strong urge to share them. You must have read the tittle and by now wondering what exactly is this, that too just before the year ends. 
Yes, this is my last post for 2019 and it isn’t rosy but real raw. Some lessons I learnt along the way. Brace yourself with some coffee because I am going on with full steam. 

It’s holiday season- ‘Tis the season to be jolly and merry but is it really or are some of us having a silent syndrome of family dynamics and feeling lonely. Let’s be honest family is anything but easy, they are the people who know us at our worst and best and they are the people with whom we are most vulnerable. 
So it’s safe to say that we all are in our own little family circus, with our own version of clowns, adventurers, eccentrics and other characters with unique characteristics. 
But quite often than not we forget to enjoy our own little private circus the way we enjoy the one we pay to see. 
After all Nobody likes their own drama, others drama is easier to watch and enjoy, but not many speak of our own, or even chose not to accept our own. No one really talks about this Family Shamily business, it’s always under wraps, portraying the best of behaviour and perfect family pictures for holidays and vacations for the spectators delight and owners pride. 
In today’s social world this exhibition is all the more prevalent of showcasing the prized family moments and perfect pictures captured. Nothing wrong with this, but it becomes easy for the person viewing or the one even posting it or portraying it to get entangled in this trap - a pressure to believe that family is supposed to be a particular way. 
More often than not we compare our lives to others pretty pictures and check ins, perfect family getaways and dinners and think what they have is better. To want a life which doesn’t belong to you, to crave for something which is picture perfect, to feel jealous, let down and often angry with our own self. To feel small and insignificant is another biproduct of today’s social age. 
The truth is far from what’s seen or in this case shown, the pictures we see - the portrayed reality is just one small part of everyone’s life. There is family drama in every house, there ought to be especially if so many characters live together, traits will clash sometimes or the other. Everyone has some family things which are painful, unhealthy, which people don’t share, which is considered taboo to do so. That’s another point I have learned in this year, if you don’t share the good or the bad with each other, how will you know, how will a person know he is good if you don’t tell them enough. Someone might feel less lonely or let down or insignificant if we share that yes we too experience similar things at one point or the other. Wouldn’t an open dialogue or just sharing that it’s normal to have family and its problems, it’s a package, it’s normal to get hurt till a certain extent. And it’s equally normal to maintain a distance to safeguard your sanity. You are not a failure, it’s not your fault. It’s ok also to feel low looking at others family. It’s ok, you don’t have to be guilty to have such feelings. It’s ok to feel the pain. It’s ok to let it go. You are not alone, life throws all of us curve balls at one point or the other. 
Perfection is overrated, flaws are beautiful, flaws are unique, they set us apart from others. That’s what makes us special. 
That’s what sets us apart. That’s what makes every family different. So why judge, why judge ourself, why judge our spouses, our parents, siblings our immediate relatives. They are the best we will ever have, we can’t go out and get another one of these from the market. So making peace with it in our own way shouldn’t it be our best foot forward? 
Instead of judging what if we enjoy the ride in our very own private circus with its unique traits and characters with a VIP seat, that too free ( if you don’t count paying in drama ) After all what family is complete without some drama, isn’t it ? 
If we stop looking with our rose tinted glasses cause even roses have thorns. 
This is what I learnt in this year, acceptance in all relationships, in family, in friendship. 
And it’s ok to feel it all, you needn’t be guilty for it or make others feel guilty for feeling it. Relationships are bliss they are meant to make you stronger, if we compare them with others life, we’ll rob ourself of the joy in the lifelong journey we need to take with these people. In the end these are some of the people who love us unconditionally right. 
Acceptance is the key to everything in this world. We need to learn to accept certain things, of the way people are and learn to live together with differences but happily. 
(Wish that applied to the current scenario in the country too - isn’t that similar too a bigger family, then why we differentiating on the basis of religion, aren’t all of us Indian) 
Another point I wanted to make before this year ends - 
Is why do we have to question or again judge people if they speak on some issue, why we take it for granted that if someone talks about a certain disease he must be having it. If someone talks about family, feelings - I am sure, must be going through a rough patch, someone doesn’t believe in CAB or differentiation on the grounds of religion - isn’t Indian enough, doesn’t have the brain to see the bigger picture. Why do we have this urge to hush every voice which is against the current? Why do we feel the need to brush our feelings under the carpet and suffer with our pain alone? Why this insecurity? Why can’t we be more vocal and accepted ? 
I just voiced my opinion, things I believed and learned in this year, things I wanted to talk about before the year ends. Things I wanted to put out in the world. 
Will I be judged? - yes mostly 
Was I sceptical to put this out for the fear of being judged ? Kind of 
Yet I am setting these thoughts free, someone, somewhere might need them this holiday season; someone somewhere will read, may be it will make a difference- a possibility. That’s enough for me today. 

Stay happy guys and make yourself happy  as someone very aptly said - in the end only when you are happy and only when you are contributing to humanity, can you provide happiness and can you contribute to others. 
On that Note wish you Happy Holidays !and A Very Happy New Year in advance. 


Tuesday, October 1, 2019

A Haunting Beautiful Date

As I researched and researched and scratched my brains to visit a place which was nearby yet far from the city chaos and traffic on the weekend. Well that's our thing, we like quaint places which are not crowded, throw in some nature and I am a happy bunny my friends.
I came across one that fit all the bills and ticked all the boxes right.
Now I have this thing for taking hubby on surprise dates, well I would like to believe that I am more of a romantic adventurous types in some aspects among both of us. To say the least I throw caution  to the wind and still have my carefree attitude whereas hubby how do I say is the more cautioned more grounded, practical, safe one, if that makes sense to you. He is the one who is the safety net i return to, the one who takes all the blows and hard hits and surprises whilst wondering what next is in store. I am thankful to God in so many ways and instances that he is, for God knows where we would be if it wasn't for his stickler ways once in a blue moon.
So I took him on a surprise date, after about an hours drive, we reached the Besant Nagar beach popularly known as the Elliots beach. From there on I started the Google map as there was a diversion. The path that we landed on or ended on was a bit dicey. Albeit, no proper roads, houses of local fisherman lined up in a row, no cars, very narrow path, kids playing without a worry, the ladies engrossed in their daily banter or just sitting outside their houses, boats parked after a day of some hard core work and no tell a tale sign of any visitors or other people.
It looked like a secluded and empty road leading to nothingness. A small fishing hamlet tucked away in the further most corner of the city.
With that view and us looking like an only car with another state number plate which believe me is not a welcome sign to any locals. We were the ones encroaching according to hubby and we shouldn't be there, either I had lost my way or like always I had thrown caution to the wind for too soon for an adventure to begin were the voices I heard in the car. That was not my voice however it sure did join the party for I started doubting myself was that really right and am I the irresponsible, irrevocably wild one in the car and was going to give up my chance to explore and be in nature. How my heart loves those two words unconditionally but sometimes you have to let it go for your own safety as well peace of mind, was this going to be one of those time when I gave in to settle for another cup of coffee in a pretty city cafe. I don't have anything against pretty little cafes I adore them but how can you compare them with a wild sunset waiting to be experienced and to bathe you in its golden light from head to toe all the way to your soul. When to my great relief a car was approaching in our direction from the other side and which didn't look like it belonged to a fisherman. I pointed it out excitedly to hubby without saying anything and trying to maintain my confidence and there he looked unconvinced still. Well, he is a tough nut to crack. What followed was a trail of vehicles, cars, couples, friends coming or in this case going from this place to the husband's dismay and my visible gay. A hesitant husband still not completely convinced started driving towards the destination.
As usual we were late due to the traffic, I wanted to take hubby for a sunset date here but thanks to his always questioning nature and arguing streak we wasted quite a lot of time on contemplating to take the road or no. But as soon as we took the road, it lead us to a series of surprises, of stone doors leading nowhere, of pretty stone benches located, bushes, sand beach on one side. All this was almost virgin land apart from the young and young at heart like me who still want to be in natural rugged places like this. As it was my turn to lecture him back for how untrustworthy he thinks I am and how he has problems trusting others, to how I do my research, to how safe I am and to all the destinations we explore, he was saved half way by the nature which just drew us right in and took us by surprise.
Standing out of nowhere the bridge located on the mouth of the river Adyar lying broken but in all its beauty with green ivy covering the river in a carpet adjacent to blues and browns of the Coromandel Coast and sand stretching as far as the eye can see. One could see the skyline of Adyar and behind it stood the wall of Theosophical garden, the thick trees peeping from inside. What a pretty place to be.
As soon as we started exploring and taking in the beauty, the quiet of the nature, the music of the sea, the expanse of the bridge and the orange sky watching. I just closed my eyes as I took all of it in, I heard a siren going off somewhere, banter and many things. The siren instead of going dim was getting louder by the minute and then at its full volume it stopped right where I was standing. The cops were there to take a look and empty the place out. I understand all that if only they could stop that crazy ear piercing noise, they did not and thus it was the end of our beach bridge time.

Well I must have forgotten or skipped mentioning to hubby dear that this place is out of bounds after dark, it is one of the haunted places in Chennai. Well honestly I did tell him it is hauntingly beautiful. Oh, that's just us. All's well that ends well.
We didn't get the sunset completely but we got us together in this beautiful setting at the golden hour.
 Bickering, trusting exploring life, love and travel together now that is our story forever.
After all beautiful moments with beautiful people make beautiful memories for a beautiful life. 
and it was a beautiful date.

Bhakti Khade Rangoonwala

Read all about the Broken Bridge here
Check out our trip in the video below

Monday, September 23, 2019

Broken Bridge - Chennai - Adyar - Things to do

A Bridge going no where - does make for a beautiful landscape add to it an adjoining seashore and a beach for miles.
This place lies between Theosophical Society Adyar near the Elliot's beach located on the Adyar river, this collapsed bridge (1977) makes for one rugged nature place off the beaten track. Its a bit secluded, also lists on the haunted and spooky places in Chennai. You can see and hear eerie things at night. Having said that the sunsets and sunrises are spectacular here, you will find this place inhibited by youngsters and couples make a bee line quite obviously too. No wonder it is also termed as a romantic place. Having no light, this place is out of bound after sunset. Picture perfect nature at its best, no wonder this place has been featured in lots of movies and shootings taking place over here is a common norm. A place for nature lovers those who like to do off beat things more than the normal touristy feel.

Bhakti Khade Rangoonwala 

P.s. Do not visit after sunset not safe. 
Do not litter please. 
You can easily take a cab or uber to this place if you are visiting Chennai. 
30 - 60 minutes are enough to visit this place. 

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Dakshinachitra Museum Chennai | Weekend Getaway- Day trip - Chennai | Mu...

A living museum in Chennai which depicts the lifestyle, art, culture, traditions, architecture and history of 4 regions in Southern India. Its a must do day trip from Chennai. Great place if you are a lover of art, handicrafts and culture. Otherwise too, you won't be disappointed.
There are 18 houses (100 - 150 years old )from all over southern India reconstructed here.
They depict the lifestyle, occupation, region, art, architecture, living conditions, professions of the regions. The Museum has lot of exhibitions, things you can buy, experience, small workshops, classes , restaurants, shops, curio stores, bazaar, souvenir store, art gallery and a gamut of things to do.
The place is serene and takes you down memory lane of the olden era. Its a great teaching and learning for children as well as adults alike. They encourage the rural craftsmen and the old dying art. Its amazing when you see whats on offer in the handlooms and handicrafts here. Things that we haven't seen outside which are not available in shops or otherwise not commercial. These art need to be safeguarded and it needs to live on.
I genuinely recommend this day trip when in Chennai. It should be at the top of your list.
One of the best museums I have seen in India. You can check out more details of the same on their website -
Explore Chennai with Klook 

Some tips for a better visit. 
It gets really hot. Wear light breathing clothes. Carry Hat, sunglasses, umbrella if you wish.
Stay hydrated.
There is a lot to cover so lot of walking- comfortable shoes must.
Carry your own water bottle you can refill that inside. Small eco travelling steps to follow.
You can easily take a Uber there and same for returning (it takes a bit longer to book one from there as its on the outskirts). 
You can also book Klook transport.
The store at the entrance of the museum has some really good stuff do check it out. Perfect for souvenirs to take back home for friends and family.
Don't miss the orientation video at the starting really takes you through the entire place with all the information.
The folk performances are worth waiting for, do find out at the entrance what are the timings they take place at.
There is Sangeetha restaurant right outside the Museum you can grab a coffee or wait there whilst your transport arrives. It serves some delicious fare. Rava Masala Dosa and filter coffee recommended with the day's paneer starter to go with.

Do let me know how your visit was, hope this helps in anyway.

Bhakti Khade Rangoonwala 

Some Snippets 

Monday, September 9, 2019

Eye of the Tiger or Tail of the Tiger

(Continued)  ⬅️ ( part 1)

So after that scary, spooky, nerve wrecking and sleep deprived night I was one wreck ball with eyes shutting just sitting in the safari jeep my head bobbing away to sleep with the beautiful early morning breeze caressing my face to lull me off to lala land while simultaneously being cruelly awakened by the jerkiest jolts and potholes and the painful impact of sheer body weight and bones against the iron jeep. This is how I started my very much anticipated first ever jungle safari in Corbett in Dhikala core zone which is a big deal ( the jungle aficionados will know ). I was in half awe of the magnificent forest. Just half cause the other half of me was too drowsy sleeping.
Which was again short lived as the sun came up and shone with all its intensity on what appeared or seemed only on me. He was just there to rob that tiny little shred of sleep. As I came to terms with it and started enjoying my safari, the jeep stopped suddenly without warning near the bushes for a tiger sighting. There was a tiger, real breathing, uncaged mysterious magnificent monster. I was getting excited, my first ever tiger in 6 years of jungle safaris and they really mounted to many. Just imagine my happiness which was as short lived as an ant or may be even shorter. Rewind to the part where I told you I was with my family on a wild vacation. So my wild crazy family in which most of them are tall and were on the side of the jeep nearer to the tiger didn't let me get a glimpse of that beautiful beast in all their excitement ( there first tiger too ) so what I saw was the tail of the tiger or something resembling it... my very first tiger sighting in 6 years indeed.
A long tail after a 6 years of long trail. Should I say now I understand the concept of Bhais ki Poonch (buffalo's tail) well I saw a Tiger's tail.

Grumpy, jealous and angry I started to see and imagine . Like a lost, thirsty traveler in the desert looking for an oasis. I saw plenty of Tigers in the blades of grass, a black nose on faraway rocks. A shadow sitting under the never ending barbed bushes or just yellow stripes camouflaging in the running trees ahead. I had become a tiger maniac and just as I told my heart that I shall see one sooner, on this trip for sure, the day ended and all I had was not the eye but the tail of the Tiger. I saw pretty sights, a herd of sambars ( Indian antelope ) crossing the river by the sunset bright.

The magnificence of the jungle magnified, the grandeur and spell it cast on me. We even had our jeep racing after others in the trail of another tigress going towards the river. But to be honest the day ended with a feeling of haath ko aaya, muh na laga... I was really heart broken, you ll feel one gets used to failure or how should I say dowsing ones excitement but with all honesty. We learn to take it with a pinch of salt but every failure hurts like the very first one, its the same. I thought in 7 years I was used to not spotting a tiger, I was wrong- it still hurt... perhaps more.
Nothing like tasty food to make one feel better. Well it always works for me, always. After an hearty veg meal, that's what you get in the core area, just eggs, no meat. Simple food is the best especially in the middle of the jungle after a strenuous and bumpy ride - quite literally. A good night sleep with no more fan fiascoes and jungle dreams at our cozy resort in Dhikala. A dreamless sleep also does wonders like no other.
Next day the jungle was calling for a fresh start. As always I told my wits to cool down and just enjoy the beauty and save myself heart breaks of the previous day. As soon as we entered the jungle, there was a lot of excitement, more than normal, the driver spoke to another in their native tongue and revved the car, the cool wind blowing on my face, felt so alive, the sunrise which had just taken place, left everything pale orange in its aftermath. It smelled of dew drops and fresh leaves and mud a little wet with dew drops and all that revving the cars had left an earthy taste of mud on my tongue. As I was enjoying these smaller things in life, this pretty forest in all its glory suddenly we came to the river where almost all the gypsies were waiting, patiently. The same spot where we were racing to just at sunset the previous day to get a sighting of a tigress with a cub. Well, the early morning seals do play over there or may be some elephant bathing. As I told myself and still heard my heart pounding.
As expected there stood a large lone male elephant so beautiful in water and he was crossing, never had I seen it in reality and it was an amazing sight to see him cross the river, that explained all the people waiting. After I took that amazing sight in, I looked a bit to its right to see a sambar transfixed to its position, so tense I could literally feel it in my own bones.

I was silencing my heartbeats as someone started talking about the tigress resting there who was not coming out. And started my first ever official wait for the tigress. Oh it was worth it, worth the seven years when she leisurely got up after making us wait for what seemed like eons and emerged royally from the bushes. The authority she held, the respect she commanded, the walk she walked of owning each and everything in her wake. This was her kingdom. She met our eyes as if from so far away, she held the gaze and I was mesmerized for life. First Tiger spotting was that of a beautiful, enigmatic, aggressive, strong mother warrior. She came for a few minutes, she looked at the sambar and she took her time and just like that she went back to the bushes as if saying not today, not now.  The sambar ran away for his dear life. It was his day to live. What more could I have asked for. We couldn't see her cub, he must have been in the bushes.
May be more. May be whatever I would have asked for at that moment would have been less, cause what was gonna follow, I had never imagined neither had an inkling.

We drove away from the river, deeper into the jungle even as many jeeps still waited there for the magnificent tigress to emerge again. We were content, speaking for myself content is a small word, I was so grateful for witnessing that tigress, leap out of the grass so nonchalantly, gracefully and yet so powerfully. That is etched in my mind forever and now the jungle was calling again with its pretty enchantments and spectacular life to be witnessed. We saw a beautiful blue bird feed its little in the nest whilst it was still flying. We saw monkeys sunbathe, herds of deer enjoying their breakfast and as I settled in my spot letting the sun seep into my bones whilst I enjoyed the jungle breeze, the woody aroma, the twittering colorful birds.

The jeep came to a sudden hault in front of a big pond and till the time I adjust to what I saw, it left me awestruck. Never in my wildest dreams had I imagined national geography or discovery documentary unfold in front of me live. There in front of me just few paces ahead lay an entire family of elephants with the babies and the matriarch and everyone in tow. There were enjoying their mud bathing ritual, the baby elephants played about, rolling in the mud on the banks of the pond. The naughty youngsters indulged in sharpening their combat skills (teenagers I tell you ). The matriarch stood ahead of everybody, alone, enjoying her me time and keeping an eye on us. No body dared disturb her. I am an elephant lover and have watched many documentaries like this and when I got to really see this I was so happy I can't put in words, as I watched dumbstruck another herd of elephants came from behind us and joined the pond. Now that was a crowd I always want to see, wild elephants in their habitat, as I watched them, these intelligent creatures their family and social bonds so openly visible, these massive giants. I just wanted to stay there but as more jeeps arrived they started getting a bit agitated so we decided to leave. And as we left, I kept looking back to the magic I witnessed, wiping my eyes to find them moist, I hugged myself, my hands tight as I had goose bumps, said a big thank you to the universe and just sat still. This safari was already the best safari of my life.

We had some beautiful sightings and were already making our way out of the jungle and as we passed we heard the monkey give a frantic call (monkeys signalling each other on spotting a tiger ).
We raced to the place this was the same hillock where we had missed the tigress on our earlier safari expecting her to be there, this being her territory. What greeted us, no one expected.
A small tiger, who looked powerful and yet had this innocence written all over him. As our guide enlightened us this was the cub of the tigress we saw earlier and he waited here for his mother to come pick him up. All of 8 months and he already looked like a mini grown tiger but that innocence just melted the heart. He was so close to us and so unfazed. Just sleepy and waiting for his mom. We waited there for what seemed like eons in one second and in another what seemed like a fleeting glimpse. The concept of time fell short or under described for this innocent beautiful beast who sat in front of us. That sight, that setting sun, his coat glowing as if on velvety fire. His razor sharp teeth peeking out when he gave his cute yawns, which he did all the time. A cute cub and yet an aggressive majestic beast. What do you name it, how does one put it in words. I just stood there and watched till I could for very soon (lost the concept of time as mentioned ) it was time to bid farewell to meet again the heart and soul of the jungle.

To be one with the free spirit of life and nature. To feel so small in front of this mighty life, these beautiful creatures, this raw feeling that one dissolves in oblivion. To cease to be and to wonder about the phenomenon of this circle of life in this most raw form. I will be back till then its a heartfelt good bye.
The sun set over me with a heart which was exploding from all that I had seen. Time will pass memories wont fade and yet with the fear of forgetting I pen these down to make them eternal. 

Bhakti Khade Rangoonwala

Check out the vlog - tiger sighting, elephant bathing and other sightings here

Friday, August 30, 2019

The Circle Of Life

As a child and well into my young adulthood I was scared of death, of funerals and then life happened, I grew up.
I realized that Death is nothing but the calculation of life, the finality, the total sum, the finale.
I ponder as I attended my grandmother's funeral, her death bringing everyone closer, everyone having each others back in the toughest time of life. The crowd that gathered for the departed soul, to celebrate the love for the person, to celebrate the life that's no more. I stood there missing her love yet still feeling it all around me in the memories that I will always behold. I stood there watching others some of whom I had never met and yet felt connected with her stories they told. I stood there watching people shed tears, I saw the smiles suddenly appear on some loving deed of her someone shared. As people comforted each other, offered their respect to the departed one, we stood together till the time the burden of grief was bearable enough, we stood together sharing the love and together we stood for her.
As you grow older you tend to see and understand death more, another funeral in the family reconfirmed my belief. Here we were again another set of people yet bonded by one, for one.
Yet again I wondered this circle of life doesn't measure the years you lived but how you lived in the years you had.
The circle of life it starts as soon as a life is created, the amount of love that goes on, that everyone feels, cherishes, nurtures, which doubles up on the birth of a new life, the celebration of a new life coming to this world. Adding so much joy, love and togetherness to the lives of people connected by these loving bonds. The feeling is so pure so raw and so happy. The togetherness of people that a new life brings into this world.
We often talk about this but we fail to appreciate death, to even celebrate it for its in this toughest time yet again another major milestone which brings people together. All those whom we have touched in our lifetime in some way directly or indirectly, all those in whose life we make a difference by our deeds. All those whom we give a bit or loads of love, those who are bonded to us by feelings and not just birth or relations. And for those who have separated and lost in the harshness of life, they too find their way back to the tribe, to celebrate once again to the life that was, is and will be. Life and Death so different yet what they do is so similar, bring people closer, to love, to cherish, to hold - whats most important - the togetherness and these bonds.
And just like that I wonder about the most important circle of life that starts with love and ends on love.
Birth or death, they don't differentiate they just bring everyone closer everyone together. It makes me realize, to think - that's what is the most important thing, that's what life/death teaches us - Love, togetherness - the most important aspects of living. To love is to live to die to breathe. That's what we tend to forget the most while making a living, we just exist. The highest purpose of life on earth is to get people together, to love, to spread love, to be loved to give love.
So why not, in our daily grind just love a bit more, smile a bit more, bring people together a bit more, live a bit more and leave behind a bit more of us in other people.
The love we give to go around when we are long gone. Let that remain in this world long after we become mud, the love that we gave, the smile we smiled on someones lips, the happy laughter in the crowd somewhere for the joke we cracked, the warmth of the hugs we shared so freely let them linger even after we are gone.
We have a grand entry and exit which both mark us in this world. We don't control the entry but let the exit be a Grandeur. Let people enjoy and celebrate our life as a Box Office Bumper Hit.

Let us live longer in the richer memories, I can compromise a bit on my worldly possessions but not in your heart.
Let me celebrate life and death like never before, one day it will be my turn and I would want mine to be the grandest celebration of them all.
Let me live before dying and let me keep living after death in your heart. 

Bhakti Khade Rangoonwala 

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

My First Scuba Dive Ever - Dying To Try Or Trying to Die

The love of adventure, for doing things never done keeps me visiting my deepest fears and strengths I never knew I possessed in the pits of my stomach. 
So right from Bungee Jumping from a decent height of 45 Mt's, going on India's longest flying fox 1250 ft., going on some deranged water activities in Konkan to some other stuff, your girl has braved it guys and believe me I was crazy scared before every one of them. 
I feel a year older should also mean a new thing accomplished or learnt, tried or in my case many a times torturing myself to the finish line. Why ? because Why not ? 
Life is short, there is so much to learn and experience, so little time and to top it all Dar ke aage Jeet hoti hai my friend - filmy enough.
So here I am in that same phase again. This year what will it be .. Que será, será
Whatever will be, will be .. the future's not ours to see.. So I just let it be.
We have been meaning to go scuba diving since a long time ( sky diving, bike riding to Ladakh and many other crazy things) , so on our Bali trip the first thing I arranged was for our very first dive. 
Hubby dear oblivious to the growing rumbling in my tummy and sweaty hands and feet literally (not just Bali heat you see) shared his excitement on every passing minute of how he was dying to try it and I was dying inside every minute as it got closer not to try it.
My fear of deep water was resurfacing and my head was just swinging side to side bobbing away in sheer nothingness while hubby thought I was responding to him. As we got in the pool for our training, that was the first time I flipped under the hand of the trainer as fear reared its ugly head as soon as I went under water. Hubby completed his training in one go as smoothly as a shark cutting through water and looked effortlessly handsome and calm if I may add.
On the other hand I struggled just like a fish without water (jal bin machli) exactly the same way if you can picturise only difference being I was in water (definitelynot a pretty sight). Finally somehow the trainer gave us a go ahead was it out of sheer boredom of me being in water with him doing my whole jal bin machli thing. Anyhow as we embarked on the boat which was taking us to the diving site with our fellow divers who were really young honeymooning couples hung up on love. I asked them was it their first time, did they know swimming, their answers satisfied me - they didn't know swimming and it was their first time - all just like me. However they appeared cool as a cucumber in this increasing Bali heat. I thought to myself how young and oblivious to the world in foolish love they were, here was I dying on the inside too proud to say anything to my hubby now that was for love too (so now I should I say not so young still ever so foolishly in love) I didn't want to hassle him. In my head I still thought wait till these people get in the sea then I will have some company to my fear, now fear my friends doesn't do too great alone, it seeks company of others fear to console itself to feed on.  
Today wasn't my lucky day. Nil company for my fear and me, no luck. 
What so happens, is often times when Fear is all alone which does happen in the darkest of times and then boom it multiplies, it flips on more in the loneliness, rears its ugly head even higher and before you know its a giant of the most gigantic magnitude - The Fear Monster. I was battling with this demon oblivious to the beautiful blue water and gorgeous sunny day and amazing instructors. Now as awesome as the trainers were the jerks chose me to go first. They tied crazy weight on me- hello this was never mentioned in the training, I could hardly balance myself or stand up straight in that bobbing boat and they tell me coolly to walk to the dive point of the boat. Now that my friends was the wobbliest walk in my entire life, no amount of tequila or Rum and coke ever devoured gave me that stance and people believe me when I say this that I have had my fair share, yet here I was doing my life's biggest no alcohol alcoholic dance with a fearful trance. Does that even make sense, oh well it never made any sense to me that time too.
I was gonna fall down any minute, as I sat on the edge waiting for my dive with all the equipment safely attached, they told me to let go off myself with my back to the water, at this point I was freaking out, I just couldn't let go, I held on more tightly till my knuckles turned white, my heart was racing, I could feel my pulse and with all that weight my sweaty hands were giving in and I was loosing my grip. It was like I was falling to my death and I did fall in the cold water, forgot to breathe, forgot to do everything I was supposed to, I was frantic the trainer tried his best to calm me down, knock some sense into me at that point I felt like knocking him off and I am sure he felt like drowning me (crazy stupid scared girl). 
A little composure later I was fine just snorkeling there but whenever he tried to take me down below I would flip. I would do these crazy possessed woman gestures to go up and then after going up I would be like I want to get out. This happened a couple of times and then my trainer at the end of his wits was like what's your problem lady (I am so sure he wanted to toss a f#@$ing somewhere in the middle ). Yeah. 
The thing was he used to guide me down with light pressure on my head where as I used to get the feeling of he drowning me. To think of it he was just helping me and I was thinking he wants to cause me harm. Natural reflex isn't this the same thing in life, we can't trust easily. We don't trust someone who is helping us. Is that a societal thing today that is ingrained deeply in our mind - Not to let anyone in, be cautious of someone helping you, never to trust, too scared to ask or take help. huh. 
My trainer persisted, call it human tendency or his professionalism or just a good heart who wanted to genuinely help me experience something so beautiful to overcome my fear. 
He dragged me down again, this time I just gave into my fear, it was the same every time, me struggling, telling to go up, then they getting me down again and it just continued again and again. Eventually I got tired of the pattern, of the fear. Even before me the trainer did they stopped taking me up even if I signed I want to go up cause even they realized it were just mind games. So I had no choice I realized, so might as well look around, I gathered all my strength to calm down and started watching the sea life it was beautiful, so peaceful even though there was a storm raging inside me, the colourful fish, the ocean bed, the corals they had a calming effect. Beautiful ocean life as surreal as it gets.
I realized I was fine till I was left to myself I got hyper when they forced me to do anything or guide me. I saw those happy couples posing away, my hubby was somewhere scuba diving by himself since I had taken our trainer all to myself not letting him go. Well there were other trainers keeping an eye but generally he was happy to be on his own without some drama for a change. After some time we went upstairs and then my trainer spoke something in Balinese with the other guy and then he tells me we have to go down again as I have to take your photos. I love photos, you guys must be knowing that by now. I can take photos for hours. I am obsessed in the literal sense.
However I surprised myself when I replied to him - I don't want any photos just take me out and he goes like just some minutes madam - photo taking . And to my horror dragged me down again. My husband posed and lovingly looked at me and for the second time in my entire life (first time was our wedding reception, well that's another story- this would be the second time )I was like please get done with this will you in my mind. I couldn't speak right or else I would have screamt. I did enjoy it in bits when we were just swimming aimlessly looking at those creatures before we came out. After coming out in the sun I just wanted to kiss the boat floor and I literally did thanks to the weight attached to me. 
Sitting in the boat shell shocked smiling at my husband as the boat took us back to land.
After a cold shower to wash all that fear down, I actually realised what I had done and was laughing over all this over some chilled Bintangs and Nasi Goreng overlooking the sea whilst the breeze blew ever so gently as I narrated what hell broke loose over them to my hubby dear. 
First time after coming here I took the scene in, the blue water and the calming sea. Deep breathe. Well now from far especially when my ordeal was over the sea did look calming and enticing. In my defence not that I have to present one or owe one but still - I still went, scuba dived and I did enjoy well now I realise. It was amazing and the biggest thing was in spite of all this fear I did it. I am sure now that all this drama is out of the way my next dive wont be so what do you say troublesome (I am quite handful, but I do get there in the end, now that's the fun the journey and everything in between. I do wish every time to get over my phobia of the deep water. I am taking baby steps. Will reach their eventually. Who knows some day a padi certificate also may be.. life's too unpredictable and so am I now. 

Beach shorts                                  
Dear Land, how I love you.

Check out my snorkeling video, let me know if you could spot how frozen scared I was.

Until I dive into our next adventure. 

P.S We booked our scuba diving experience through Klook online. 
We went to the Bintang Beach Club for the same. Amazing experience and professional trainers. 
You can also directly book through them.
This is in no way a sponsored post, we have paid for everything, just sharing our experience. 
Tip - For snorkeling experience buy your snorkel set and take it for travels, falls out to be much cheaper and hygienic. You can snorkel anywhere in shallow sea too near your resort for free.

Hippy Explosion Flip Reverse Top Navy - Chroma Blue - Neon Orchid - Aquasplash
hippie explosion swimwear 

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