What to do when an epiphany hits you
Now the wren has gone to roost and the sky is turnin’ gold
And like the sky my soul is also turnin’
Turnin’ from the past, at last and all I’ve left behind
Could it be that I am finally learnin’
-Ray Lamontagne, God Willin’ & the Creek Don’t Rise
Four months ago, I started taking my flatmate’s dog along whenever I went running. During these runs, he would often pull at the leash to stop me while he sniffed at bushes, flowers, crevices and holes and occasionally, other dogs’ buttholes. Initially, I used to get annoyed at the interruption but eventually I realized he was literally stopping to smell the roses while I was running, running, running the race. This was exactly what I had been doing the last entire year. Running from one goal to the next, keeping life on hold until I achieved it, only to run towards the new one at the stop line. However, towards the end of the year, I realized the need for a break. As darkness crept in from the land of east, I decided to watch the sun set on 2017 in Gokarna. Gokarna is a small temple town on the western coast of India. A perfect weekend getaway for those who can’t resist the lure of water.
Have you ever felt a thought come and hit you out of nowhere and your restless mind went “Yes!” That is called an epiphany. Once I allowed my mind to unwind in Gokarna, quite a few of them hit me over the three day vacation. Epiphanies can be real eye openers but the trouble with them is figuring out what to do when you get one? I found that out too during the vacation.
I was supposed to meet my friends who were travelling from different cities, in Gokarna. So, I set off alone from Bangalore. There is something very soothing about travelling alone. A tranquility that almost always forces you to reflect. The same thing happened to me. After a long night of careful reckoning, I reached the conclusion that If I relieve myself at home right before the bus journey and drink only seven sips of water throughout the night, then I can easily reach my destination without needing to use the delightfully clean public restrooms on the way.
By 10 ‘o’clock I reached Zostel Gokarna and the view from there more than made up for the exhausting journey.
PS: Zostel is one of the coolest stays one can find in Gokarna. It is primarily for hipsters on the road intending to connect with fellow travelers.
After a quick breakfast at the Mantra Cafe (Heads up for the single ladies, the bartender/accountant with the accent is kinda cute), we headed towards Om Beach. The beach is named Om on account of its shape. It is quite surprising that the flawless, sharp curves of the shoreline have not yet been affected by either time or tides. Banana boat rides are sold as “adventure sports” for the “thrill seekers” at the beach. Yes, you read that right. A float, shaped like a huge banana is tied to the end of a boat. Once the boat drags the float to the middle of the ocean, the people sitting on it are unceremoniously dumped into the water, with life jackets on, of course. Out of the 6 of us, 4 people did not know how to swim, so naturally this conversation ensued:
The sensible woman, who is not drunk at 11 in the morning: “I am not going for that. It looks dangerous!”
Me, the marwari who is calculating how much more the ride will cost me if the others don’t agree: “It isn’t dangerous. I have done this before. Trust me.”
PS: Never trust a madu, when it comes to money.
Farhan Akhtar from ZNMD of the group: “Dude its fun! Come on, what better way to die!”
Me: “I don’t think that helps our case.”
Eventually we did go and it definitely was fun so 10/10 recommend it. Afterwards, everyone lounged on the beach soaking in the setting sun while I searched for good restaurant numbers in Gokarna. It was then the first epiphany hit me:
“Whoa I can talk to anybody in this whole world with this phone in my hand. Even Elon bloody Musk! I mean nobody is calling me but still… oh no! I forgot to call mom after reaching.”
When you have an epiphany, call your mom.
For dinner we went to Namaste Cafe on Om beach itself. Yeah, you can see how fruitful my restaurant searching turned out to be. If ever a vegetarian had to doubt the reason for his existence, Namaste cafe is the place to be, the veg food was that terrible. Seafood however was very well done. It is the only restaurant on the entire beach, so the staff didn’t give a flying fuck about service. After waiting for a table for half an hour, we just scraped one together by stealing one chair each from the already occupied tables. By the end of dinner, I was ready to give the manager a piece of my mind but as I said earlier, nobody cared. Hence, I paid the bill with a gracious smile so as to not ruin the evening. And also because I had paid with cash and I wanted my change back. That’s when the second one hit:
“Is the key to patience the fact that you are boiling mad inside your head but act all zen outside or that you don’t get angry at all? Because bruh if it is the first one, Imma be the coolest person alive.”
This prompted me to call for a round of drinks, for which half the people ordered coke. Including me.
When you have an epiphany, celebrate it.
…Continued in Part II