Thursday, 14 April 2016

Start writing things down

Does it happen to you that you think about something and need to write that quote? Or you observe something that must be noted by either clicking it or by writing it down? Or you somehow create a poem but there is no pencil or paper to write it down and feel it can never be written on a phone? This happens to me so often that I have started carrying a small book and a pencil with me. Each and every bag of mine has a book and a pencil in it. Right now I have so many half filled books each  with my thoughts scribbled and I feel I must write some of it down on my blog too.

To start with I am posting a small poem that I had written few weeks back while I was travelling from Dehradun to Roorkee.

And he slept with a blanket over his face, 
on a footpath, 
never far from the madding crowd, 
waiting for the sun to rise again.

My book has some observations like 
  1. How one particular area has different colors of flowers and foliage during different time of the year.
  2.  How a driver of BEST bus calls the bus conductor near him when he needs assistance when he is driving the bus.
  3.  How sun and sky looks from my window during particular time of the day and season.
  4.  What are my requirements and needs from a car and how must a car be analysed by me before buying.
  5. Must watch movies and must listen to songs.
  6. Poems that I loved (I have noted down only Gujarati poems, Don't know why)
  7. Some Ted Talks that I must wathc and some Podcasts that i must listen to.
  8. Places that I need to visit in Mumbai and India and world.
  9. Some sketches that I drew while traveling
  10. Mostly unfinished poems and some stupid thoughts on life.
  11. Some experiences of my travel, point wise.
  12. My views and observations on work, family, life, friendship, love, etc.
  13. Address, phone numbers, email ids, 
  14. My notes and points that I need to cover in my speeches.

I Think about you when I have nothing else to do,
just like how I think about my goal.
I don't know if you make me happy yet,
because right now you don't.

मेरी रेवड़ी कहाँ गयी? मेरी इंक पेन और पेन्सिल है कहाँ? आज शुरू हुई है मेरी छुट्टियाँ, मेरी दादी है कहाँ?

Conquering fear of diving in deep water, one step at a time

Thank you for mailing me your super secrets on things you are scared of doing. That was good response to my previous blog where I had mentioned about trying to do ten things that I am afraid to do.To continue this, I have picked up my fear of diving in deep water as a new task that I need to do to strike off my list.

Because I don't know how to swim, I never ventured into water level above my knee on a beach. If by any chance I do some water sports activity, like going around on a banana boat, I never jump into water. Reason 1) How do I climb on the boat again? Reason 2) what if my life jacket fails?

In April 2013, I went for a trip to Andaman Islands and I ventured into deep sea for the first time We did a sea walk stint near Coral Islands there. The people over there were reluctant to assist an amputee but after finding me over enthusiastic, they took me in. We did some initial training, and I was ready for my sea walk experience. The most difficult part for me was climbing down a ladder and then equalization of pressure. Somehow completed the whole walk in water. When I reached the surface, my nose started bleeding and I had the most terrible headache. That day I told myself that I will never dive in deep sea again. (That was headache talking)

But in April 2015, when Divyanshu Ganatra asked me to try scuba diving, I somehow forgot about my old experience and directly said yes. Divyanshu has started his own organisation that promotes adventure sports for people with disabilities called Adventures beyond Barriers. In India ABB is pioneer in promoting adventure sports (check out their details here)  and I was lucky enough to learn the techniques and skills from Kshitij Mittal from FinKick Adventures(check out their details here ).
My first part of SCUBA training was completed and I was asked to learn swimming to finish the next 2/3rd of the course. Somehow due to tournaments and work I never prioritized swimming and never ventured into water after April 2015.

In March 2016, our support group from Bangalore (It is named as One Step at a Time started by Hema Subhash along with AASTHA foundation by Sunil Jain) organised a small swimming camp for people with orthopedic disabilities to learn how to swim. This motivated me to learn swimming here in Mumbai. I filled out my forms, got medically certified, and I started my very own swimming camp.

It has been few sessions now, and I am learning on my own. I know that it will be a slow process but I have taken up this task and there is no looking back. I now wish to swim without assistance and that too in the deeper part of the pool. Once I finish this, I am again going to Pune to finish my course in Scuba diving and hopefully be a certified diver to dive unassisted in open waters.

All thanks to Divyanshu, Kshitij, Hema and Sunil who inspired me to learn a skill I never thought I could learn after my accident.
I will post pictures of me learning how to swim soon.