International Stuttering Awareness Day (ISAD) is round the corner. We thought of starting early the celebrations. Three of us- I, Nathan and Nashville set out to the capital city Panaji for an outing. The theme of the outing was – “Celebrating Stammering”.
We all met at the ferryboat point as decided sharp at 10.30 am. We waited for the ferryboat to arrive. We had to cross the River Mandovi boarding this “ferryboat”. As we boarded the boat and it sailed across the river, our first activity for the day was about to begin!
The boat was crowded with people (and yes the vehicles!). The journey across the river was short- about 7 mins. We decided to spread and try some voluntary stuttering with strangers in the boat. I approached two people. I could also see Nathan talking to a tall guy with an Enfield. The response of the people was fabulous. Everybody appreciated the courage for doing this exercise. The boat hit the dock, and we were on the other side of the river. As we walked outside the boat, I saw one person (with whom I had practiced voluntary stuttering) waving goodbye with a big smile on his face.
Our next destination was the Reis Magos fort. We jumped in Nathan’s car and headed towards the fort. We arrived at the spot, and there it was- located on a hillock- a magnificent fort, adjacent to a Church. We climbed up, set to attack the fort with our stammer!
As we walked inside, we stopped by the placards and practiced reading it aloud. The people and the guards observed us. We entered the museum and Nathan explained the historical significance and how this fort was resurrected by doing a research of the architecture of those times. We also saw some amazing ancient paintings and the famous cartoon collection of the Nationally Acclaimed Goan Cartoonist- Mario Miranda. We talked to the strangers too in the museum and art gallery. There were some foreign tourist couple who discussed with us how they loaded the cannons!
After museum it was straight to a near by restaurant on the river side. The ambiance of the restaurant was superb and we could hear the splash of water as we took our seats. We ordered lots of Goan sea food and had a very nice and long conversation about many things- sharings, our stories, NC 2014, Nashville’s memorable meeting with Nick Vujicic in Bangalore…. and many more things….
We had a wonderful outing and celebrations of stammering and ISAD 2014. Indeed, as Nick Vujicic said to Nashville when he met him- “Feel blessed that you are one of the chosen few who stammer”, we all felt blessed today!
For pictures of the outing, click here.