Archive for Apr 2012



I spent the Easter vacation in the most unexpected and delightful place doing 3 things: learning to scuba dive, keeping a hammock warm, and eating delicious Egyptian food.  Dahab is a dive village on the coast of Egypt’s Sinai peninsula.  It’s pretty far away from everything except the Red Sea, whose waters hold the most awe inspiring aquatic life.  I have no pictures of my time underwater, only memories, since my priority was to learn the fundamentals this time around, but in my mind’s eye the things I saw are as clear as ever.  Thank you to Dive Urge for the fantastic hospitality and amazing experiences!

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In, out, in, out, in, out, in, out.

Rapid, shallow, raspy panic fills my lungs and brain as I desperately gasp air from the regulator between my teeth and take my first breaths underwater.  “Up! Up!” I motion to my instructor, but he just shakes his head, hands making the equivalent hand gestures for “slow down and calm down.” Down. Ironic.

In, out, in, out, in, out, in, out.

I’m on top of a mountain.  My quadriceps and lung cavities are burning with the exertion.  I am high. Maybe literally.  High on life, low on air.

In, out, in, out, in, out, in, out.

I am trying not to panic.  Is it? Am I? Could it be? No. It’s not. I’m not. It could never be. A tightness fills my chest.  I need to sleep. I need to relax.  Breathe, Kat, breathe.  Everything eludes me.

In. Out. In. Out. In. Out.

“Slow down” he says. “Close your eyes. Wait… Now open them. See this incredible new world of salt and blue. Sip the air as if it was a hot cup of tea.”

I turn around. Everything is below me. There is little air, but I feel strong.  I am standing. Difficulty lies in the dust at my feet.

Could it be? Can I? Will I? Sometimes yes. Sometimes no. But not trying is the only certain way to fail. The tingling spine and tightening chest can be the secret ingredients to greatness.  Stop.  Put a hand to your chest.  Close your eyes. Breathe in; so slowly your hand hardly moves.  Now out again.  Gently. Slowly.


I am grateful for my breathing lessons.

mobile 23 breathing lessons

mobile22 breathing lessons