Drop everything and fly….. how many of us are able to do this anymore? Plans come in the way. Mindsets. Must-haves. Must do’s. Cannot. Not now. Next time!!!!

So what a pleasure when 4 times this week I had people who just hopped aboard and sailed off with me when there was no plan to do so.

The first was Srini and Jayanti. The plan was lunch. With another old friend Deepa. 4 of us wanted to catch up and talk about the good old days in Calcutta when we were young, starting out on our careers. Deepa was down from junior and Srini and J coincidentally were down for a wedding from Bangalore. I proposed sailing snd it was shot down. No time. Got to get back to the wedding functions and of course deep down my guess is also the fear of this unknown activity. I have learned now ( I think) to keep my passion in check. Lunch was planned. Everyone was late. I wanted them to see the new Aquasail sailing lounge. This I planned. By giving the lounge address. Perhaps the vibrancy of the lounge embedded in their minds a desire to sail.

We set off to lunch exactly opposite the lounge in deference to the shortage of time. The service took time since we were at a club. Slow service, slow delightful conversation. The clock ticked on. We remembered more and more. We laughed at our youthful memories …. and then there was the invitation from me to sail. And to hope over home too.

J was the one who said. Let’s sail. We are here. We should sail. Deepa and I had a timeline to depart for Mandwa in an hour. Could we? Should we? Lots of moving parts.

Suddenly it was a yes from Srini. A quick sail. Maybe actually just see the boats. We moved. The lethargy had set in, following a sumptuous meal, but the mind and heart were now energised. Srini the planner, hesitated. Traffic. Functions commitments. But the heart prevailed. Spontaneity won the day.

Out on the water, there was a transformation. Everyone wanted more. A little longer. A little further. A little faster. More pictures. More memories. More smiles. We sailed. We steered. We tacked. We chatted. We connected. We created memories that will last another few decades cementing the age-old friendship with a newfound love. We planned a family sailing get-together for Jan when the kids are down. SAILING had started working its magic on us. The spontaneity opened up another world for us to explore and create memories with.

Deepa gives in and sets off on an adventure!

After finally dropping Srini and J at the jetty and bidding farewell with promises to do this again soon, Deepa and I set off to Mandwa. This was planned but had not been. Deepa was to have met me the next day and stayed a night over. She had her plans set for each meal and each evening that she was in Mumbai. I tempted her with Mandwa. Come one night earlier. Let’s set off post-lunch. Let’s sail in Mandwa. Do something unique. Adventure is in her blood. Few calls to realign dinner commitments and we were set.

Off we went speeding across to Mandwa wind in our hair, spray on our lips. No talk. just happiness alive on our faces. Mandwa with its colourful beach boats welcomed us. Customers were on the shore having a blast. I looked at Deepa and she at me. Why wait to change? Let’s knock off our shoes, roll up our jeans and hop on a boat. We sailed my favorite FUNBOAT. We rode the waves. I got some clients to follow us and we were soon having fun on the water. Out at sea, we chatted. The boat sailed. We shared stories and our life experiences. The sea was calming. It brought us together. The years melted away. We simply connected with wind waves and the universe. The sunset on the water painted a forever picture in our minds and hearts.

The next day after a wonderfully restful night and a hearty breakfast we reluctantly bade goodbye to our little beach getaway. We said bye to the boats and stepped onto our speedboat that was to take us back to our many Mumbai commitments. As we were hopping on I pointed out our beautiful 25-foot sailing yacht to Deepa. There she is, I said, waiting to sail back to Mumbai.

A spark was lit instantly spontaneously. Why is she sailing back without us? Can we not sail her back.
This time I was the doubtful one. DEEPA you have to be in Mumbai for your meeting. She looked longingly at the boat. I calculated the time. The Aquasail staff was ever ready. Can we set sail now instead of 2 hours later? Why not? Water ok board and off we were. Ready for an adventure. Ready to cross the Harbour.

What a crossing. Deepa picked up sailing. We sang songs. Splashed our feet in the water like young kids. And lo and behold our staff pulled our chocolate too!!! Melted and yummy the sweet gooey chocolate mixed in with sea salt spray tasted like heaven.

For Deepa, it was 24 hours of spontaneity- from lunch to sailing in the harbor with friends, to dashing to Mandwa and sailing a fun boat and returning on a sailboat across the Harbour.

Could any planned trip have been better? Impossible.

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