Monday, June 14, 2010

Swimming in the river

One of the activities that the girls enjoyed very much in Taman Negara was river swimming. They got around an hour of river swimming every afternoon that we were there.

I loved swimming in the rivers. It is so different from swimming in the sea. Tembeling river was a paradise - calm waters, very little current and shallow waters with gently sloping beaches. Bathing in the sea makes you feel dirty after that, and itchy. But bathing in the river is wonderfully refreshing.

Anjali enjoyed swimming in the river. The first day, she was playing in the shores mostly with her feet in the water. The second day, she wanted to learn to swim, and after spending a some time in the water, she went to playing with the sand and river rocks with another young boy who was also playing there. By the third day, she was unstoppable, running along the beach, unmindful of the other swimmers, and of the various obstacles, Splashing all the other children and also our guide - with whom she was fairly comfortable - enough to be left alone for a few moments with him. Six months ago she would have raised a holy tantrum to be left alone with a stranger. But the lure of a cave adventure was too strong.

Sophia also loved swimming. As she is competitive and wants to do everything Anjali does (unmindful of the fact that she is half of Anjali's size and that she cant sit down in deep water). As a result, she swallowed several mouthfuls of river water before conceeding that she could not really go by herself in the river and allowed husband and me to help her. Sophia has a preference for Self initiated and independent exploration and holds a grudge against people who dont let her do this. 

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