Monday, June 02, 2008

using your imagination

imagine that you're walking along an idyllic beach in goa. and imagine that you come across a group of young men and children, also walking along the idyllic beach in goa. and imagine that they brought their bull with them out for a walk. i mean, why wouldn't a bull also enjoy a day out at the beach? having a bit of trouble imagining this? here's a picture to help you:

next, imagine a large group of people in colorful t-shirts doing a teambuilding event further down the beach. imagine that the area in which they are doing the teambuilding is surrounded by pretty, colorful flags. again, a picture to help stimulate your imagination:

now, imagine the bull coming upon this scene. add in the cheerful shouts of the people in colorful t-shirts. add in that they were very focused on their competition and not on the lookout for a bull on the beach (who would be?). add in the fact that bull is used for goan bull fighting--not like in spain, but bull against bull in the ring. add in that the people were out walking him for exercise and that his muscles made him strong and that his horns had been sharpened with a file to make him more lethal to his bull opponents.

remember that it was children and young men who were walking the bull.

let's go for a moment into the bull's brain. he comes upon a scene filled with colorful flags, people shouting and running around and he thinks, "hey, i'm ON, this must be the bullfight that these silly people always make me do." so our friend the bull breaks away from the young men and heads straight through the thick of the group. tossing one person into the air, trampling another and in the end, goring one with those sharp horns right in the arm.

the lucky thing about the scenario we are imagining (because this must be imagination, right, it couldn't really happen? no one would walk a bull on a beach. you'd have a better chance of being abducted by aliens than having that happen, right?) is that it happened among a very calm, level-headed group of ships' officers. within seconds, they were making sure their colleagues were ok and were helping the man who was gored over to a golfcart that could take him quickly to the waiting ambulance back at the hotel proper.

three people were taken to a hospital to be checked out and the one who was gored in the arm had to stay overnight and have some surgery, while the other two were shaken up and bruised (one had a perfect bull hoof-shaped bruise on her arm), but released right away. the one who gored was in high spirits the entire time, flirting with the pretty sari-clad doctor and all of the nurses. he even tried to insist that he didn't want any anaesthetic for his surgery (he was a finn, after all, so very stoic). so, if it had to happen to someone at the event, it couldn't have happened to a better guy. (that sounds much harsher than i mean it to--i mean it in a good way.)

and the girl who was responsible for the whole event? she was pretty shaken up. she thought she had taken every safety precaution imaginable, but she had, admittedly, lacked the imagination to predict that someone would walk their fighting bull on the beach right where the teambuilding was taking place. in the risk analysis, that was somewhere below the group being hit by a stray meteor.


Phyllis Hunt McGowan said...

Your wit carries this story through to its end, despite the tale being hypothetical and completely imaginary.
This was so, so well told.

I can't begin to imagine what the people were thinking...

julochka said...

i actually have a video of the incident, but didn't think it felt right to post that. it was very traumatic!

Jaime said...

Crazy story!
I'm so glad you had pictures of this..I don't think my imagination could have put these two scenarios together.
How odd that both of these things were unlikely in the first place ( I mean...I bull taking a leisurely stroll on the beach??) and then how incredibly odd that they collided into one unbelievable tale!

Not only that, but you were there to take pictures!

julochka said...

i was there to take pictures, because it was me who was that girl i mentioned who was responsible for the whole event! i wasn't actually there when it happened, but as you can see i had passed the guys walking the bull up the beach from where the teambuilding was. the video i have was done by the professional videographer we had at the seminar. i can't really bear to make it public tho'.

Stu-art said...

Thank you, Julochka, for some wonderful blogs that make for interesting reads. I am a writer in South Africa who came upon your blog from a colleague's.

What struck me here was that though I hear that it was a traumatic experience and that you may take on some responsibility, you seem to put all the responsibility onto the young men ("Why would they walk a fighting bull on a beach?"). My question to you is, Why would you have this competition/party on a beach in India? It seems like the pot calling the kettle black! Why would a bunch of Scandinavians need to go to India to play some team building game? Why do you have more right than locals to play their game on their beach?! Accept your part in the event instead of blaming the young men. It's called projection! Best, Stuart

julochka said...

hi stu(art)--

i totally appreciate your point of view. and those were some of the questions we asked ourselves afterwards. and by the way, it wasn't a bunch of scandinavians, it was a very diverse international group.

and one of the things we thought (because they had assured us of it), was that the beach was private and belonged to the hyatt.

there are always multiple sides to any story. i'm just presenting one here, from my own perspective.

thanks for stopping by.


julochka said...

one more thing, stu(art)--i just reread the posting and to be honest, i don't think i was blaming anyone in it. and i do believe that the entire last paragraph is me accepting responsiblity.