I Wanna Have Abs Like Dionne Monsanto so I Went Snorkeling

I saw the recent post of Dionne on instagram and I was like, WOW ABS! I heard she is a swimmer, so I came up with an idea.

 

I went snorkeling for 2 days in a row thinking, if I would snorkel everyday, my abs can come a little bit closer to that of Dionne.

So yesterday was the start of I-wanna-have-abs-like-Dionne work out.

D, my snorkeling partner and I, decided to swim till the platform. The platform is a floating deck in the middle of the water, about 100 meters away from the shore, on top of approximately 6 meters deep water, where we can take some rest before heading back to the water again.

So from the shore to the platform and vice versa will be about 200 meters. Not bad for a workout, right?

Yesterday’s swim was really ok even though the weather was a bit bad as it was cloudy. But today, the sun was smiling to us, giving my already tanned skin an even nicer tan.

Though yesterday, D complained that she got wounded on her palm. She said that two huge fish were swimming along with her and hit her palm, though I didn’t really believe her as her wound looked more like a paper cut to me.

Image result for unicorn fish
the fish looks like this as per D, and when we say huge, we really mean huge                                                      image:http://saltwater.tropicalfishandaquariums.com/tangs/UnicornfishPhoto.asp

Today, as we were already halfway to the platform, I felt a sting somewhere below my right knee but I didn’t pay attention to it. We continued and as we reached the platform, we climbed up to take some rest. Then I saw the wound. And the blood. I tried not to panic.

Blood + Ocean = Shark

But still, I tried not to panic for we were 100 meters away from the shore. And if I panic, D will panic 100 times more.

I tried to figure out how I got this wound and couldn’t come up with a conclusion. I know for sure I didn’t get this from the corals and until now, this is still a mystery to me.

After taking a few minutes of rest on the platform, we headed back to the water.

I felt a sting below my right knee as we headed back to the salt water.  I haven’t watched The Shallows and I guess I won’t watch it anytime while I’m here in the Maldives. Don’t get me wrong. Till date, no cases of shark attacks have been reported here in the Maldives as the common specie here is the Black Tip Reef Shark, a harmless type. It’s just me and not the Maldives.

Blood + Ocean = Shark

And honestly when we headed back to the water, I was shit scared.

D took the lead. I was swimming at a much slower pace because I was already tired. D was like an Energizer battery charged twice.

I was following D when I saw something on the ocean bed. A huge stingray. A huge f@^#*ng stingray.

Image result for sting ray
the stingray that I saw was just like this, lying on the ocean floor, as if waiting for its prey                                                                                 image:https://www.montereybayaquarium.org/animal-guide/fishes/southern-stingray

I was panicking and I was breathing very fast, my goggles started to fog.  I told myself, the stingray won’t think I’m a food right? But I was still freaking out. Then I saw D swimming like a car running on NLEX at 4 in the morning – 150kmph (as I assumed). D was about 10  f@^#*ng meters away from me, leaving me with this huge  f@^#*ng sting ray and not to forget the wound below my knee.

After swimming for my life and I was really hoping that the huge  f@^#*ng sting ray didn’t follow me, I was again shit scared when I swam across a school of tiny fish, don’t ask me what type of fish this is, I don’t have a clue.

They were peacefully swimming as a group when I suddenly swam across them creating chaos. These tiny creatures swam all over me (maybe thinking I’m hunting them?) and they actually hurt my skin. But what scared me the most is that it was feeding time already. Whenever I am at the beach in the afternoons, I would see these tiny creatures flying at the surface of the water (they almost looked like a smaller version of flying fish to me) as they were being chased by the huge ones.

With that in mind while I was swimming in the middle of these tiny ones, I almost had a heart attack.

And when D and I reached the shore, I was like, f@^#!

I like seeing these sea creatures from afar, not while I’m swimming especially when I don’t have a pro swimmer/diver with me.

Today’s experience was really freaking scary but I think, with a bit more exposure to these sea creatures, my fear will subside later on.

I will still snorkel, maybe after my mini trauma is gone. I still wanna have abs like Dionne though.

Puto-grapiya

Hindi pala madaling maging photographer ‘no?

Sinubukan namin magphotography session kahapon. Syempre ako lang yung camera man.

CAMERA MAN. (or woman?) oo pero di ko tatawagin ang sarili kong photographer. Camera man lang kasi ako lang yung may hawak ng camera.

Minsan akala natin madali lang ang mga bagay-bagay unless masubukan natin. Kala ko basta marunong ka kumuha ng anggulo at maganda camera mo eh pwede ka na sa larangan ng photographia.

Una ay nakakapagod pala. Naka isang oras at kalahati din kami kakahanap ng magandang background at anggulo. Bilang hindi kami propesyonal, wala pang mga props at make up and retouches and all. So palagay ko kung kasama yun, mahina ang 3 hours sa isang photo session.

Hindi din ako marunong gumamit ng mga photoshop at kung anu-ano pang programa para sa pageedit ng mga litrato. I don’t know photoshopping coz I only know shopping.

Ang sakit din na sa halos 300++ shots eh kaunti lang yung magugustuhan mong kuha bandang huli. Pero masaya yung mowdel ko kasi sa dami ng litrato, kahit everyday for the next 365 days ay makakapagpalit siya ng profile picture.

Kaya eto ang aking munting handog, mga litratong sariling sikap sa pagkuha at pag anggulo at pag-edit sa paint, LOL. Joke lang yung paint.

Saludo ako sa mga photographers. Taas ng respeto ko sa inyo mga ser at mam. 

Yung last two shots ang pinaka paborito ko sa lahat. Feeling ko ang pro ko. LOL

Cameraman: aysabaw

Mowdel: Mama Maria

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Maldives Ulit.

Nag Maldives na naman si Sabaw noong Hulyo. Noong isang taon ay nanggaling na siya rito, pero hindi nakatiis at bumalik ulit.

Ito kasi ang paraisong nagsisilbing takbuhan ni Sabaw kapag nabuburyo na siya sa disyerto. Napakalapit lang kasi, apat na oras lang ang biyahe mula Dubai at hindi pa kailangang problemahin ang visa.

Speedboat
Dinala sila Sabaw ng speedboat mula sa Male (kapitolyo ng Maldives) papunta sa isla.
Villa
Dito panandaliang nanuluyan si Sabaw – Villa sa Angsana Ihuru
Beach Loungers
Dito niya natatagpuan ang katahimikan….
Beach
at kapayapaan ng isip…
Breakfast
Kung saan siya ay nagigising sa malumanay na tunog ng mga alon sa umaga at hinahainan ng masarap na almusal…
Lunch
….at tanghalian sa tabing dagat
Stingray feeding
Dito ay inaalagaan ang mga lamang dagat (tuwing hapon ay pinapakain nila ang mga Stingray at nakiki agaw sa isda ang ibong si Mario)
Mario
Ito si Mario…
Turtle
Dito, pinangangalagaan nila ang buhay at kalikasan….
DCIM100GOPROGOPR0192.
Dito rin napapalapit si Sabaw sa kalikasan (matindi ang kapit ni Sabaw sa kanyang kaibigan dahil may nakita siyang pating sa hindi kalayuan)
Yacht
Sinubukan ni Sabaw agawin ang manibela pero hindi siya nagwagi….
Buwan
Dito lang siya nakakahiga sa ilalim ng kalangitang binibigyang liwanag ng buwan at mga bituin…

Hanggang sa muli kong pagbabalik aking paraiso.

This isn’t a travel blog but…

It just happened that I was so unproductive yesterday in the office so I thought of diggin’ out some old photos (to get some inspiration) and clicked on a folder named Maldives. Well,  I just mentioned my unromantic love story just a bit earlier right? The love story was really quite old and I got married last year(already), of course without posting about it but now, I’m not saying that this is the right time to post it but I can’t post about my trip to Maldives without mentioning it.

So, the day I (we) got married last year is the same day that we flew to Maldives. It’s just a four-hour flight from Dubai but because we took a cheap connecting flight, it took us more hours to reach Maldives but anyhow, it is worth the long (waiting) hours.

When we reached Male, we were greeted by the hotel representatives and were escorted to the Seaplane Terminal. We waited for about 20-30 minutes before we got into the seaplane. There are hotels that can be reached by speed boat from Male but we are heading further South so we had to take the sea plane.

Seaplane 1

Seaplanes 2These seaplanes could hurt your ears, they are just too loud. It took us about 45 minutes to reach the resort. Though I must say that the ear-hurt is worth the amazing aerial view.

This is Male, the capital of Maldives.  It looks like a post card, if you’re looking at it from the seaplane.

Male 1So, after 45 minutes of ear-hurting and sight-seeing, we arrived at the resort. Angsana Velavaru offered us a lovely In-Ocean Villa,  built on top of the water, with amazing views of the horizon, the sun, the sea and the sky.

The villa has its own pool, verranda or terrace or however you may call it. It also has a 2nd floor which offers you an amazing view of…of everything. You can also have your spa treatment or breakfast or lunch or dinner or barbeques on the 2nd level, your choice.

In Ocean Villa

 

Bed
Inside the In Ocean Villa – Bed

 

Living Room
The living room

 

As I said, the 2nd level offers you the view of everything which includes your neighbors.Neighbors

Neighbors 2

And oops, I think that’s me, the mermaid on the pool.Oh it's me

It is just amazing that even though you are not a professional snorkeler or even if you can’t even swim, you can snorkel. Does that make sense? LOL. Anyway, the thing is, you can just go down from the jetty and walla! You can see all sorts of corals and fish and small sharks. See, that’s my husband on the picture. He can’t swim. He doesn’t even know how to float. But then because the water is just waist-deep and you can borrow the goggles and the life jacket from the resort’s marine center, you can then feel just like a pro. Just sad that our camera isn’t water proof. We could have taken photos of the corals and fish and small sharks swimming around.

Snorkeling

Snorkeling 2

Ok, so the hotel team knew that we just got married so they arranged a Maldivian Wedding Ceremony for me and my husband. They knocked our doors around 3pm, gave me a bouquet and we started walking from our villa to the jetty with some guys singing Maldivian songs to the beat of their loud drums. So all our neighbors walked out of their villas and watched us as we walk through the alley with all these Maldivian peeps walking with us, singing and, making loud noises drum beats.

When we reached the jetty, a speed boat was waiting for us and they took us to the hotel’s main island to do some coconut planting which is also part of the ceremony. They said, the tree will be named after us so when we come back sometime in the future we could see how the tree has grown.

Afterwards, they took us to a private island via the speedboat and there, we did the actual wedding ceremony, the I do’s and I don’ts.Wedding

Sunset Island
breathtaking Maldivian sunset

 

And after the ceremony, the team left us with a chef and a waiter. So basically there were just four of us in the whole island. I felt a little bit like Chuck Noland and Wilson for a few hours.

The friendly chef and waiter served us a nice sunset dinner by the beach.

Juice

The next day morning, we booked for  an early morning fishing trip. We were so excited to see the sun rise and to go out to the sea as early as that. I told my husband “Aria! Walang kakain hangga’t walang nahuhuling isda!’ And we both laughed.

We tried, but we didn’t get any fish. We were sad. The water was so clear that we could see tons of fish eating our baits but not getting hooked up( and how did this sound? *_*).

We went back to the villa with teary eyes but with a conviction that we will try to fish once more in the evening and won’t come back without any fish in our hands.

We spent the rest of the day snorkeling again and had lunch (didn’t I say walang kakain hangga’t walang nahuhuling isda? but we did anyway) in one of the restaurants, Azuro.

Azuro

Seriously, I can sit here, drinking watermelon juice (?!) till the sun sets every day for a week or more…. just like this. Chillin

So, afternoon came and we prepared to go fishing again. We left the island at sunset and reached the middle of nowhere after the sun has set.

You can catch all sorts of things here in the Indian Ocean, really. Emily, the Chinese staff of the hotel went with us and caught a medium size shark, maybe 4 feet long. At first, we didn’t know it was a shark but we knew it was heavy. It took 3 guys to pull it up on the boat and of course in the end, we had to let the poor shark go.

One of the Chinese guests caught something very heavy too. He cried for help. At first we thought it might be a shark again (oh how blessed the trip was!) but then when it was finally pulled up, it was a huge coral reef. I asked myself, just how did his fishing strings reached the bottom of the sea when we were in the middle of nowhere? Could his strings be longer than mine?

So after an hour in the middle of the dark sky and dark blue waters I started to feel depressed. My husband caught 2 fisheses already and the other guests inside the boat also had something on their buckets already but I still haven’t got a single one.

But then patience is a virtue. I remembered a book that I have read a longggggg time ago called The Longest Silence which is about fishing and surely from the title itself, you’ll know what it means or what the book is all about.

I felt some movement on my bait. I gently pulled it up and down and up and down and suddenly I thought I would fall off the boat as it pulled me, really hard. I pulled. And it pulled back. It was so heavy and as again I pulled the strings towards me it pulled back harder and my hands got red and the nylon strings started to hurt my fingers. I shouted. Help!

So this kind Maldivian guy took over the push and pull situation that I was in and even he had some difficulties in pulling this thing.

Fishing

And when the grace of the sea finally reached the boat, it was a beauty. I only caught one, but I caught the largest fish of the night.  A huge Red Snapper.

SnapperAnd this is what all of us got for the night. The nice blue fish in the middle was my husband’s catch (and some other smaller ones). Then you might ask what will happen to the fisheses that we caught? The answer is  a nice and fresh seafood meal the next day. Either grilled, steamed, fried, with szechuan or soy or garlic or sweet and sour sauce, our choice.

Catch of the nightI was almost on tears when the staff waved their goodbyes to us and sent us off to the seaplane.

I’m sorry for the unromanticicity of the post but more than the romance, I enjoyed the whole trip because the place was so serene and that I felt very close to the fish nature. This trip could be expensive but trust me, Maldives is worth its price. I am dying to go back again to its clear waters and its laid back lifestyle.

And so at the end of reminiscing and wanting to go back again to Maldives, I found myself so inspired and dreamy that it didn’t help with my productivity in the office yesterday.