August 2011: It was my first International trip to Thailand. We were in Pattaya for a holiday sponsored by my Company. It was a long and tiring day for us. Visiting the Coral Island was some substantial fun and adventure. Among everything else, the deep sea walking was the one of a kind I had ever done. It was more like snorkeling with oxygen-connected huge helmets. Those helmets were so heavy that I thought I would never be able to ascend. It was somewhat like a huge flask, with a pipeline connected to the jetty which was supplying oxygen. The water pressure was immense, and I felt like my head would blow up and my eyes would pop out. I was first in the diving group and I was feeling a bit lost and alone as I landed on the seabed. After all the usual security instructions, I wished to kick myself for not listening to the guidelines and emergency signals mentioned by the instructor. But within a few seconds, others followed down and I got a couple of hands to catch onto.
“Oh Thank God!” – I said to myself seeing Pratik (my team mate) holding my hand. He was feeling the pressure as well. Finally, everyone in the group had landed on the seabed except Ankur. He already feared the idea of sea diving, and I assumed he must have been attentive to the instructor’s emergency signals and had gone up. The instructor then signaled us to follow him to the corals.
We walked on the sea bed, and boy! Walking in the clear emerald green water on the seabed seemed pretty difficult and we all were struggling. I was literally being dragged by the hands catching mine. I was feeling some tickling in my ribs, and started laughing.
Pratik looked at me and said: “Blob, blob, blob!”
I could make out what he was asking from inside the glass mask. Then I looked at his body and saw small fishes biting his clothes. Soon we reached the corals and they looked so colorful. It was a huge landscape of corals. This was the first time I had seen such colorful underwater. I had seen videos of them in the Discovery Channel. I thought I would jump on those soft, colorful and gentle plants. But when I touched them, I felt their rock-like hardness, and realized that acting upon my previous thought would have inflicted tremendous somatic agony. We got our pictures taken and waved at the camera man.
I loved swimming, but I had never done diving. Even a non-swimmer could have managed to descend under water due to the sheer weight of the equipment. It was a wonderful view inside the water. I could see plenty of fish roaming around us.
“I’ll do the real sea diving using the professional kits and equipment with proper training. That would be more adventurous than this one” – I thought.
As the fishes swam around us, feeding on the pieces of bread I was holding, I realized how difficult we make our lives thinking about our future. We work so hard and make plans for the times which are unknown to us. We have forgotten to live in the present and never realize that these days won’t come back to us. I felt so happy at that moment under the sea. I felt like I was living in the present and enjoying it. I could see everyone down there wondering about the beauty of life God has given in every living thing and everything he has created.