Well well here’s kicking off September with a nostalgic experience from exactly the same day, an year ago. Ah ! not the exact date per se but this was from Father’s Day 2018. Today being Father’s Day in New Zealand, it’s very apt that I posted this on the day about something that left a lasting memory in both our lives forever. Dad and I were travelling around in the Balkans on our boys trip and on this day we were in Kotor, a small town in the Gulf of Kotor located in the South Eastern European country of Montenegro. Oh what a quaint little town this was; probably the most beautiful town in all of Europe, for me at least. Heidelberg, Riga, Vilnius all came a close second, in comparison. The town in itself was probably centuries old where all the vikings would have been walking around I think. And the town centre is full of cobble stone streets and very narrow alleys surrounded by cute little buildings which housed a lot of cafes, eateries, accomodation etc. I remember we were in a homestay with an elderly couple from Korea who had purchased their property only to let it out to travellers. It truly was one of the most memorable places we stayed at during our Balkans trip. Anyway this post isn’t about Kotor or Montenegro at all. It is actually about something that happened totally unexpectedly.
That day in the morning we took a bus to a nearby small coastal town right by the coast of Adriatic Sea, called Budva. It was about a 45min ride to get there and what a beautiful blue sky day it was !! A perfect set up for both Dad and I who both love swimming out in the open waters . We took a long walk from the bus stop to this secluded spot in the coast, to swim. Or so we thought. When we reached the point where we wanted to hang out in the waters, there were probably a couple of thousand people, in the so called secluded area !! So we thought we’d go a bit further out in the water where we can have the waters just for ourselves without many people around. About 300mtrs further out in the sea, along the rocks we made our way. The water was so warm and less wavy that we could have probably swum the sea across to the Italian coastline; it was only about 300kms away 🙂 Anyway coming back to Budva waters, we were kind of out in the open now and enjoying our swim when we noticed a cliff nearby where a few people were jumping off from. Given I love such things, I told Dad to go with me there so I could take the jump too. And then we did.
It was only on reaching the cliff base we realised how high it was !! We got off the waters and went up to the top to assess it anyway and boy, was it high.. I mean 25-30 ft doesn’t sound like much but when you are standing at the edge of the cliff and looking down in the open water, and with a lot of rocks right below, it did look a bit freaky.. But hey what’s the fun if you don’t take the plunge right. And it wasn’t like I was the first to do it. There were a bunch of them doing it over and over again. So I mustered some courage anyway and decided to jump ! Dad came up all the way to the top with me too, to see how it would look like from there. So with him watching by my side I took my first plunge !! Phew, now was that exhilarating or what?? It didn’t take long for me to come out of the water and up the cliff, for my next jump.
I was so loving it, every time I jumped off. Yes it was scary to take the ‘leap of faith’ but when I did it, it just felt awesome !! So after my 4th jump I was just waddling away in the water below and I saw Dad standing at the edge of the cliff, probably wanting to jump as well. He was in two minds about taking the plunge, no doubt. Realising his thought process was filled with skepticism, I yelled from below encouraging him to jump. Two yells later, he gathered all his courage, took a deep breath and voila ! He jumped off a 30ft cliff and he was just 67years young at that stage 🙂 As soon as he emerged out of the water I could see the excitement in his face. I bet he felt as awesome as I did watching him. So I told him we need to capture this moment and that I would go back to the coast where we had our bags and my phone in it. I swam all the way, wrapped my phone in a couple of plastic bags and swam my way to the cliff again. We found a perfect spot to capture the action from a nearby rock. Dad captured me jumping off a few times and then it was my turn to shoot him. He didn’t want to jump too many times, which was understandable. So I did my best to record him in action. Click HERE for the video (more links below) of his jump 🙂 It surely is worth a watch. After that I jumped a couple more times before we wanted to call it a day in the water and grab some food before heading back to Kotor that evening. What an amazing day that turned out to be, leaving us with something to cherish all our lives.
Well on that note two things from to take away from this post I suppose !! First: Age is just a number if you have the attitude. Dad certainly proved it on the day.. I was super proud of him for what he did and at 67 that was the last thing I was expecting off him to do on our boys trip 🙂 And second: A part of Life is always about overcoming all your fears of facing any obstacle !! I mean yes this was just a jump from a certain height but in that context, we all come across major hurdles in our lives; sometimes we ask for it and sometimes get them unexpectedly. While some find the best solution (for them) to overcome these, a lot of them just brush it aside to deal with them at another time and they never do. Remember putting it off for later is not going to clear your fear, instead it just buys more time for you to undermine yourself. So yes face your fears with your head held high and with the right attitude, you now have the perfect recipe to overcome anything.