Alright, I am back after one and a half months. I wrote the last time on July 23rd. I had to go to a summer school in Italy between July 26 and August 7. I sandwiched it between two mini vacations. I visited Rome, Naples, and Pompeii between July 27 and July 30. Then I went to the school. Afterwards I went to Milan. I stayed there for three nights. From Milan I went to India. I had made a spontaneous plan to go to India before I left for the school. I came back to the Netherlands on September 7, and here we are. This is the first weekend since the last post when I have the private space and the peace of mind to sit down and write.

A lot of things happened during this one and a half month. I don’t have the time today to write about all that, but it will come out in the coming weeks.

I am jet-lagged. It’s 20:23, I am sleepy already. It takes a week to adjust to the new time zone. But it’s not just about the time. It takes time to adjust to the new surroundings and new people too, even if it’s all familiar. When I go to India after so long, I take a few days to get comfortable with the house, my parents, and just being in a different place. The same happened this time. It might also have happened before, but this time I noticed it strongly. I came back on Wednesday evening. I went straight to work on Thursday morning. I had a meeting at 10 on Thursday. I had to teach on Friday. I was stressed, so I thought I should get back to work straight away. That was a mistake.

I was really weird. I have been seeing all these people the whole time I was away because I was working from home but just being in front of them in real life made me uncomfortable. I was behaving strangely. I was too closed off – almost rude. It was not just work. I met a friend too outside of work, and I felt the same. I didn’t want to talk. I met this friend again this weekend and then the things were different. I was comfortable. Well, whatever. Now I am fine. And now I am sleeepy. I just want to have dinner and go to sleep.

BTW, I have been swimming for the last two days. I go to the pool. My swimming is improving. Yesterday there was a different instructor/life-guard at the pool. He refused to give me the floaty. He said it’s only for swimming lessons. I explained other instructors always allowed me to take it but he still refused. I was very uncomfortable in the water in the beginning. I had one hour. I used half an hour to just calm myself. Then I could swim relatively comfortable in the second half. I went again this morning for one hour. Today I didn’t ask for the floaty because I had gained confidence yesterday. Today, too, I was slightly uncomfortable in the beginning but I calmed down quickly. I am getting better at frog-swimming. Sometimes I freak out while swimming like a frog (because I inhale water accidently or get tired) but then I switch to dog-like swimming. It’s very comfortable. It makes me spend more energy than frog-swimming, but it’s a useful style for survival. I am also getting better at breathing out below the surface. I practiced it today. With this I can also get better at front crawl. So far I kept my head out while doing front-crawl. It’s very inefficient. It makes me spend more energy. The previous instructor (the kind guy) told me that I should keep my face below the surface to move forward efficiently, but I was not comfortable in the water at that time. Now I am getting better. Today I could do that. I swam better than ever while exhaling under water. I practiced it for a few laps. It’s all going well. I am getting more and more comfortable in the water with time. Being comfortable is of prime importance while being in water. We float naturally if we are calm. We drown when we freak out.

Alright… ciao! I will be back next weekend.