A disturbing notion crossed Andrew’s mind, “Why am I geared to view humanity with scepticism and negativity?” At one point during the day, Andrew found himself alone in the training room attempting to eek out more hamstring flexibility, when Bishal, a young guy from Nepal walked in.
Bilingualism has always impressed Andrew and forced him to think that he too should master a second language. Bishal spoke English quietly but with fluency. With headphones in, Andrew didn’t understand what the Nepalese man said. “Are you Arabic?” was his first impression. Given the moustache-less beard Andrew had fostered over the past few months, he could understand this misunderstanding.
After Bishal repeated himself half a dozen times, he was in fact asking, “Would you like to learn acrobatics?” Having always wanted to master the flip and aerial manouevers, Andrew answered exuberantly in the positive. According to Bishal, along with Kung Fu, acrobatics forms part of the standard school curriculum in Nepal.
Beginning with basic rolls, Bishal was patient and demonstrated a few gravity-defying stunts in the progress, serving as incentive. Throughout their session, Andrew’s mind was plagued with the thought, ‘What is his ulterior motive?’.
Maybe he did have an underlying reason, Andrew pondered at the end of the day. Why must one assume it is sinister though? Bishal, having been at the academy for only a few days, came across as a good-natured individual; perhaps he was simply trying to make a friend to make his stay at the academy a more enjoyable experience.
Andrew had much to learn about allowing his perceptions of scenarios and people dictate real-life situations. Although a degree of scepticism is healthy and necessary, allowing past events and thoughts to direct the present and future is dangerously limiting to one’s growth potential. Perceptions, after all, are not reality, but the emotions and beliefs we attach to it. Recognising this and being more objective, taking a situation for what it is, was another lesson Andrew hoped learn over the course of his stay.
For now though, flipping was on his mind. “Two weeks and you should have a front flip, my friend” Bishal said with a smile and a nod. Andrew hoped this to be true and that night dreamed of executing masterful aerial manoeuvres at will.