I learned how to swim-at 28

The last couple of months have been filled with a flurry of activity

After months of cursing and wondering why I wasn’t getting a job, I got three job offers.I decided to go with the one that made most sense-in terms of long term career growth.And boy, do I regret it now.While I do enjoy the job, my manager drives me up the wall.If I had to describe him in one word, I’d call him an asshole.

I could feel myself drifting back to the world of self pity and sadness.I would hit snooze every time the alarm went off and think to myself, is this even worth it? I knew I had to do something that would make waking up worth it. So what did I do? Well, I joined swimming classes.

The first day of class, I woke up at 5am, sat on my bed and had this sinking feeling in the gut of my stomach.

“What if I hate this too? What if I suck? What if everyone else there is going to be younger than me? What if the others laugh at me?”

I wanted to go back to sleep right then, but I somehow made it to class.An hour later, I realised this was the best decision I had ever made.There were people in their 60’s, there were people who were fighting their fear of water, there were people who were recovering from accidents.I was inspired.I enjoyed being in the water. I also had something to look forward to every morning and although I still hate looking at my asshole managers face, learning how to swim did something for me, that I haven’t felt in a long time.

Learning how to swim gave me purpose. 🙂

P.S : Anyone hiring for an account manager? I’m your lady. 😛

 

 

 

A slice of Cambodia in two weeks

I know I’ve not been active as I promised I would be. It’s been a busy month, and November started on a high note.Me and my boyfriend have been in a long distance relationship for over a year now and we had finally decided to meet up after 7 months of being apart. Since I didn’t have a job and I didn’t have a cash inflow, we decided to go to Cambodia(read cheap).My budget for the whole trip was around 60000 Rs, and fortunately we were able to stay within the budget.Here is how we planned our trip.

Flights and Visa

Our flights were booked 3 months in advance, and were booked separately. He was flying in from Paris,France and I was flying from Bangalore India.The flight from Bangalore to Phnom penh cost me about 220000 Rs. Once that was settled, I got my visa from https://www.evisa.gov.kh/ and the process was super simple, and cost be around 3200 Rs.On landing at the airport,all you have to do is show your e-visa along with your passport and voila, you’re in!

Phnom Penh

Day 1-2

Day 1
So here’s the deal. We didn’t really plan our trip or have a strict itinerary in mind.The idea was to just go with the flow. The only thing pre booked was our stay for 2 nights at PP. So, on arriving at the airport, we got a local sim for 15 dollars, and then got us a cab( I still had some dollars remaining from my US trip). The cab from the airport to our hotel cost us 12$.

We had booked the okay boutique hotel at PP(33 $ per night). The location is pretty ideal, and was at a walking distance to the royal palace, central market and the riverside. We didn’t have a lot planned the first day, so we just explored the central market(Ben got his currency exchanged), and then had dinner at the riverside.The plan for the next day was to visit the S21 and the killing field museum.We got a half day trip planned courtesy our hotel for about 16$( not inclusive of the entry fee).

Day 2
We started by visiting the Choeung Ek Genocidal center. On entering, this is the first thing you see.Majestic, isn’t it. I would highly recommend taking the audio tour. The visit was a humbling experience as well as an emotional one and one that should not be missed.

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Once we were done with the tour, we headed back to our hotel so as to plan our next destination. But before you leave, make sure you visit the Foreign correspondents club or FCC. Yes, it’s expensive, but we loved the place and the ambiance.

Day 3- Kratie

Ben was hell bent on dolphin watching, so the next thing we did was to catch a bus to Kratie. Again, we booked this from the hotel. We got a Sorya bus at around 7 in the morning, and reached kratie by around 3pm.(cost us 20$) We had booked a hostel the previous night, and I don”t remember the precise name(i think it was dolphin hostel) but boy, it was awful. The rooms, the halls all smelled of toilet water, and the it cost us around 18$. Fortunately, we had booked only for a night,so the plan was to check out as soon as possible once we were done with the dolphin watching.

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The food we had so far

Day 4

The next morning, we first went for a trek in the mountainous area with a temple nearby and then headed out to watch the dolphins.Was it worth it? Heck yes! It was fabulous to watch the dolphins in their natural habitat without humans feeding them.

Once that was done, we checked out and headed over to Le Tonle Guesthouse.It was slightly more expensive but the rooms were clean, and comfy and the food was to die for.Don’t forget to try out their Amok!

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Day 5-Off to Siem Reap

There isn’t a direct bus to Siem Reap, so we took a bus till Kampong Chang and then took a connecting bus to Siem Reap. The bus ride was arduous and long, and by the time we reached the hotel, it was around 7pm. We had booked 3 nights at the Angkor Orchid Central Hotel. Once again, the location was ideal, and was extremely close to the night market. Since we didn’t have a lot of time, all we did have dinner and call it a night. The temples were beckoning us for an early start next day.

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Fried Tarantulas at Kampong Chang

Day 6-Temple Hop and Insect Eating time!

It was finally time to visit the one thing that Cambodia was most famous for. The temples. In order to visit the temples, you have to head to the ticket center first, and get your tickets. You can choose between 1 day ticket, 3 day ticket and a 7 day ticket. We chose a 3 day ticket simply because a two day ticket didn’t exist. It cost us 40$ per person.The temple tours start from 5am and end at 5pm. Once we had our tickets, we headed over to the first stop, which was the most famous Angkor Wat temple.Guides are available for hire at the spot, but we decided to go ahead without a guide.The day was hot and just after an hour we were covered in grime and sweat.Few of the complexes we visited that stood out were Pre Rup, and Preah Khan. The sight of the gigantic tree roots growing through the ruins is definitely a sight that is both stunning and mind boggling and was quite unlike anything we had seen before.

One word of advice:The temple visits can get difficult in bad weather since there is a lot of climbing to do, and by 5pm, we were dead beat. However, ben wanted to hire a bike for the next day, so we walked around and finally managed to rent a bike. (you have t submit your passport in order to rent a bike)

After this we took a break and then headed out to the Siem Reap market to find a cafe where we could try out some bugs. Yes, you heard me right. Bugs! I never thought I’d say  this, but it was delicious!! Definitely a must try. The night market is bustling with activity, and pubs are open till late at night. I loved the vibe of the place, and it definitely is a great place to let your hair down.

14938220_10157667339240291_4653825727679566945_n Continue reading “A slice of Cambodia in two weeks”

A bit of sunshine

Sometime back, I was going through a shitty phase.I was travelling overnight, when the guy next to me noticed that I’m in tears. He asked me if everything is alright, and I say “not really”. I don’t know why, but he assumes someone close to me must have died. He then went on to tell me his story.About how he lost his girlfriend of around 5 years to an accident, and how he did not know how he would get over it. He says that its been a couple of years since her death, and he is set to get engaged to his best friend/now girlfriend the very next day, and that no matter how bad things may seem now, it is not going to last forever. That I will get over it.I shrug and say “I hope that’s true”. He says trust me, it will. I wished him all the best for his engagement, and he assured me once again.I smiled.And we said our goodbye as he alighted from the bus.

I saw that stranger again today. Needless to say he did not recognize me.I told him about the night we met, and he has a huge smile on his face.He says “You look happy, and I’m guessing you are over your bad phase whatever it was. And I say yes.” We both laugh and exchange pleasantries.

See that’s the thing. Life isn’t easy. You might lose someone you love, you might lose your job, you might be suicidal, but all you have to do is believe that in time things will be alright. And If it isn’t yet, it will be in time.And trust me. It will.