Walking across the bridge from the train station to my office this morning, I caught sight of a cyclist who had stopped in the middle of the bridge and was peering avidly down into the water. Generally speaking, seeing someone standing on a bridge looking into the water in Perth means one of two things: (a) they’ve dropped their keys/ipod/mobile phone or (b) there are dolphins down below.
When I got to the bridge I was delighted to see a family pod of dolphins breaching the water as they chased after a resident school of fish. The brown hue of the water was light enough that I could see the bottom of the river and I swear there were a zillion fish down there. I must be getting more frugal in my old age or something because now every time I see fish, I can’t help but think,
I’ve spotted dolphins on exactly three occasions in the almost 10 months I’ve been working here and I have to say that there is something that makes you smile when you see dolphins in the wild. I wouldn’t exactly say it was earth-shattering or magical, but it’s nice to see animals going about their lives undisturbed by mankind.
When I went swimming with a whaleshark earlier this year, I didn’t find it earth-shattering or magical either. It was more like, ‘Gee, I’m swimming with a really big fish!’ but I had placed it on my list of things to do due to the simple fact that everyone had said it was ‘earth-shattering’ and ‘magical’. I enjoyed the experience, but kept waiting for the mind-blowing, mystical encounter that everyone had raved about and of course, that never ended up coming.
Similarly, I remember the first time I was ever beaten. I kept waiting for the ‘earth-shattering’, ‘magical’ feelings to come but they didn’t. I even tried to hype myself into the feeling that something ‘special’ was being done to me, but it couldn’t erase the reality of a few strands of toughened leather being brought down on my naked flesh with force. After building my expectations up to a point that I was expecting choruses of angels to descend from the sky and sing in unison with each and every stroke because I was so sure that a beating was what I needed and what I wanted, it was a bit of a let-down. The next time I waited even more avidly for the magical feelings to come but alas they still didn’t. In fact, I’m still waiting for those magical feelings that everyone seems to go on about. After all this time I have a suspicion that those feelings don’t really come for anyone and in a mind-over-matter way, people just imagine the angels and think it’s somehow magical.
I have a sneaking feeling it’s a big conspiracy that has taken over bdsmland and in the vein of how women were never supposed to tell mothers-to-be anything in regards to their own child-birthing experiences except how ‘magical’ it was, I think everyone paints a picture that is prettier than reality.
Dolphins & beatings certainly haven’t brought magic into my life, but they do make me smile from time to time.