Headed to the South of Sri Lanka last weekend for some surfing with other JICA volunteers. Saturday and Sunday were spent walking around, drinking coconuts and surfing. Needless to say, it was a great way to spend a weekend.
But when I got home, I realized that the weekend meant much more. I’ve been on my own in Sri Lanka for less than a month. This was my first long distance train ride, first Hoppers, my first time getting surfing instructions in Sinhalese. There were many firsts, and I was able to go through them with more experienced people that I trusted. This meant two things. One, I felt safe. And two, this is important, I could watch how they dealt with situations I experience everyday. How they interacted with people, how they dealt with the unexpected. Watching them was a lesson in itself, allowing me to adapt and modify what I saw to suit my own needs.
Of course, none of this I realized until I got off the bus in Colombo. I felt somehow more confident, more “at home.” More things are possible now, because I went surfing this weekend.