Before I begin, I must admit that Anoushka’s column made my weekend. It’s encouraging to hear something positive about what I put across through this column.
I’m shooting in Goa these days and it was while walking on a beach that I got the idea for this week’s column. Yesterday I saw two kids, about 15, sitting on the beach and checking their Facebook account on their dad’s mobile phone.
Ordinarily, I would’ve just seen it as a sign of kids becoming techno-savvy at a young age. But seeing these two gazing blankly into the mobile screen against a backdrop of the beautiful setting sun and the breaking waves made me realise how outdoor activities, be it sports or just a casual stroll, are fast being replaced by ... well... sitting.
Being from a fauji background meant constant traveling, sometimes to places which didn’t have the luxury of internet or fancy coffee shops. So I grew up learning to kill time by doing the most random things like going for a swim in a nearby river or inventing odd outdoor game with friends. Thankfully, that habit stayed with me. Even now, the time I get off shooting, I spend playing basketball.
Unfortunately, that culture is fast becoming a thing of the past... chilling with friends means chatting on social networking sites and the only element of sports in peoples’ lives is what they see on TV or play on gaming consoles. Now, I don’t intend to judge anyone... I’ll be the last one to tell anyone what they should or shouldn’t do. All I’m saying is that going out with your friends once in a while for a soccer match or an hour of cycling can be more fun than you think.
I’m sure everyone remembers the time when they would come back from school, take a nap and head out for hours only to come back sweaty. Ever wonder why nobody felt the need for “an evening smoke” then? Because it never occurred to us amidst all the mindless playing.
So whether it’s getting in shape for a girl, giving up an addiction, or just having fun — get up, go out and play!