It feels like ages ago and, at the same time, it seems like only yesterday when we would walk around the town of Rasdhoo and a few turns here and there would lead us to this breathtaking sight!
Let me show you more of this tiny slice of paradise on earth.
Most of these photos were taken on our last full day in the Maldives. The weather was most beautiful that day, despite a bit of rainshowers in the early morning. I remember reading somewhere that in Ireland you can see a thousand shades of green. Well, in the Maldives you can see a thousand shades of blue! Sigh.
Heavy as it was, I dragged along my trusty old tripod specially for photos like this. Selfie at the beach! I did not trust any other tourist and I had other plans for the tripod anyway. I just had to be quick in case I step on the dozens of hermit crabs scuttling off to find a new spot along the beach. Also, the sun was in our eyes and it was difficult not to squint!
Coming up to this view every single time never ceased to take my breath away. So much blue, so clear, so beautiful. I could take photos of this view all day, and I could sit under that shade all day just basking in this glorious view! But hey, then I would not have discovered how much I love snorkelling.
Nature was showing off a bit. Just look at those clouds! It’s like a child is playing with the sky and blowing away the white stuff for all to see. Thank you, little child in the sky.
I already mentioned how small the island is. After a couple of days, it was not difficult to find our way back to the guest house and to our preferred convenience stores. This is the street right outside the guest house. No pavement, it’s all compacted sand and crushed shells. Even their fences are made of rocks and broken corals and shells patched up together with cement. It’s actually quite quaint. This was taken very early in the morning so it’s like a ghost town.
This is the one and only stadium on the island, located right across the police headquarters. I suppose it makes it easier for the police to break up any potential fights over football. Maldivians are crazy about football! This is where they held a parade/show during the Eid Al Adha festivities too. More on that later.
If you turned 180 degrees from the football stadium and walked a bit down the path, this is what you see. The ocean is always within walking distance anywhere you may be on the island. The streets are often quiet, the locals minding their business but politely smiles when you look their way. They are not like other people, definitely not like Filipinos who would be demanding to know your entire life story within the first five minutes of seeing you!
Boats from nearby islands bringing their guests for snorkeling usually drop anchor just beyond the reef where I suspect the water is a lot deeper than anywhere we ever swam to. There was one time when a hyper-excited guest ran a jetski all along the water parallel to our beach so the waves stared coming in just as I was precariously making my way on top of a particularly large coral reef. I was so worried about getting tossed the wrong way and ending up with nasty scratches all over.
The trees by the beach offer shelter from the sun and the locals make this makeshift chairs using pipes or tree branches as frame and then wrapping net or webbing over it to create a seat. It’s a lot more comfortable than it looks or sounds, although I suspect if you stayed there for too long you’d end up with diamond-shaped marks all over your bottom and your back!
Patrick loved it here. No school bus to wait for, no alarm clocks, no homework, no house chores. Just the sky and the beach. I loved it too! I didn’t have to worry about him because he could take care of himself in the water. And after all that exercise, none of us had any problems falling to sleep at night. Except that one time when they forgot to switch off the corridor lights.
I could not get enough of those clouds! Twenty years in Dubai and I don’t remember seeing anything close to this beautiful scene. Certainly not these colours! Unless you count the heavily Photoshopped photos I have seen from some folks. Anyway, I have some panorama of this and our last sunset so watch out for those.
One last glimpse of the beach. It’s a sight to behold. Bernie asked me at one point if we were still on Earth because it sure looked like we were in heaven! Okay that’s cheesy but it was true. There in the water, under that sky and surrounded by all that beauty, we forgot about deadlines at work, little snags with family and friends and our personal demons. It was just ourselves in nature. No worrying about mundane things. Every once in a while, each one of us needs to feel that way. Disconnect. It’s good for the soul and the mind.