A Suitable Hobby

Hit the waves and taste the salt in the air. The sea beckons.

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Sailing on the Mumbai harbour

I spent my childhood in a house near the sea. I would often visit the beach to listen to the soothing sounds of the waves. I would watch the fisherman’s boats anchored by the shore, fascinated, and wonder where the ships on the horizon would disappear to. It was this sense of wonder that inspired me to begin my journey in sailing.


In my early twenties, I started working as an apprentice interior designer at an architectural firm, where I earned a humble stipend. During this time, I first had a chance to sail a boat as my boss was a sailing hobbyist. And my love for the sea felt nurtured.


One day, my boss had foreign visitors. He took us all to the Royal Bombay Yacht Club in Colaba, Mumbai’s southern tip. I was thrilled to be there and watch the sailors at work but also disappointed that their membership fees were beyond my reach. So my boss introduced me to the RBYC’s sister club, the Colaba Sailing Club, the sole idea of which was to encourage sailing among young people. Their fees were nominal in comparison.


I spent two months of my salary on a life membership at the Colaba Sailing Club – a very big investment for me at the time, and undoubtedly, a very rewarding one.


I learnt the basics of sailing in a two-day course at the club. In my weeks of practice, I learnt some tips and tricks of sailing from the tandel (the caretakers of the club’s yachts). These can only be acquired through experience – something I understood much later. I will share one of my sailing misadventures with you here someday.


Sailing is where my love for the sea meets my love for photography. And it has proven to be quite a memorable adventure.

 

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