Sunday, 20 July 2014

Bubbles, bonding and blue lagoons

 Finally,  I was on the home stretch, just had to endure Frank's laborious talk which in usual Frank style was proceeding as an extended oration, milking the moment and squeezing every last drop out of centre stage, as he explained in intricate detail the workings behind the IT's software to deliver its promise to Gagion.

Of course, nothing wrong with this, especially when the project is highly visible and integral to the team's outcomes in six months’ time. Anyone would want to claim their 15 minutes of fame...and glory - just make it engaging and keep the audience in awe while taking them on your verbal journey. Oh no, not Frank, he was completely unaware and pitched his oration in his usual monotone voice. There was no escape..... so endure.

He was the last speaker in what had been an exciting and productive day but it was time, it was time to wrap it up. However, Frank was just getting into his stride and he wasn't going to let the last speaker syndrome nor the low energy in the room deter him from speaking, not now.

As I changed my posture in my chair, my eyes rested on my sparkling bottle of water. I was entranced as I watched the bubbles rise and pause at the water's surface before bursting and sending ripples across the waterline. As my eyes moved to the middle of the bottle, I watched as another bubble sprung to life and ascended, pausing, briefly before bursting. I continued watching as the regularity of the bubbles appearing, ascending and bursting onto the surface of the water, lulled me into a semi-hypnotic state.

Frank's voice became a soothing distant monotone, blending into the background of my consciousness. I was transfixed on the regularity of the bubbles rising, pausing and bursting onto the water's surface. My breathing synced with the bubbles' rhythm and I was unaware of others' in the room as the lull transported me into a deep, relaxed and peaceful state. I blinked and upon opening my eyes, I found myself swimming in a lagoon, a tropical paradise with cascading waterfalls dispersing clear free-flowing water into the inlet surrounded by tropical flowers including breathtaking pink water lilies. I slowly swam breaststroke towards the waterfalls, diving underneath the cascading showers and swimming between the drop of water and the rocks, a space of 2 metres.

I kicked and swam towards the other side of the waterfalls and greeting me at the other side was Frank, he held out his hand and supported me while I joined him on the rocks.

We lay on the rocks and soaked up the sun's warm rays before positioning our bodies to enter the inviting, warm, granite blue lagoon again. As we stood together, our bodies curved in unison, Frank looked up and over his arm and called out, 'Allie, we are more similar than different.' With that we both dived off the rock swimming side-by-side across the inlet in rhythmic movements, intermittently dipping our heads under the water and surfacing.

Just before reaching the other side, I dived under the water once more and upon surfacing, I found myself back in the meeting room and aware of the sounds of applause. As I realised the group were applauding Frank, I too joined in.

As the meeting closed and the group made their exit, I pushed my chair back. Frank approached me and smiling, he handed me a flower, a breathtaking pink water lily. Astonished I accepted it and asked 'how.' He paused, searching my face intently for his own answers and replied, 'Allie, we are all more similar than different.' Please join me. With that he extended his arm and we made our way to the reception room where the other team-members were congregating in celebration of the day's wins.


  1. Hi, Allie-Millie! Writing The Rapids will be my last stop before I take my three week blog break. I'm glad I didn't miss this fascinating story. I never know for sure if I'm reading fact or fiction but it doesn't matter because I have had similar experiences. In the middle of long seminars, lectures, speeches and sermons, I have focused my attention on an object, examined every detail and drifted away to another place. In a doctor's waiting room I have examined the patterns on floor and ceiling tiles. I also accessed a trance like state whilst becoming aware of my entire field of vision. An example of this was in the church I attended as a boy. In those days churches had no air conditioning and sitting through a long sermon on a hot day was an ordeal. Pews were equipped with ornate fans for parishioners to use to keep cooler. I remember the peaceful and pleasurable feeling I had when I became aware of all those fans waving back and forth in unison all around me throughout the congregation.

    In motivational seminars I have attended, the participants stretched out on the floor in a darkened conference room whilst the Pachelbel Canon in D played softly. We were invited to go into a trance and visit our favorite imaginary spot. Mine was a composite of childhood experiences at my favorite beach. All senses were brought into the fantasy, everything I saw there - the sea extending out to the horizon, the blue sky, the sun, the waves, the breakwater, shells and stones. I became aware of everything I heard there - the sound of calling terns and tumbling tides. I felt the warmth of the sun on my skin and the refreshingly cool ocean spray on my face. I smelled the salt air, the tanning lotion and the hot dogs being grilled by a nearby beach vendor.

    I experienced... ecstasy.

    Thank you for another enjoyable post, Allie-Millie. Please take good care of yourself and I hope to visit you again when I return early next month! Goodbye, dear friend!

  2. Hey Shady Del Knight,

    Thanks for posting, so close to your departure too and I am pleased you shared your own experiences of dealing with sitting still for long periods, especially as a kid. Enjoy your break and keep safe :) yours at writing the rapids, Allie-Millie