The whale inside

The whale is inside,
Please don’t let it hide,

For you are destined for the ocean,
This magic potion that keeps us alive,

Energy is why we thrive.

So do not waste time on what matters least.
Instead have a feast,

On what you know to be true.

Endure the pain,

For soon will come the rain,
Washing you to shore,

And once more you will rise,
When we finally realise,

That love is the only prize.


Last night I had a dream about whales playing in the ocean.

I have a special connection with whales ever since a close encounter that I had with them 3 years back.

I met someone randomly at the gym a few days ago. As I entered the room he came up to me and asked me about my experience on that fateful Sunday when I was knocked out by one of the most majestic marine mammals to roam the planet.

This person went on to tell me about his own amazing encounter with whales whilst surfing only a week back. He was just surfing by Stanwell Park, in the Illawarra when he was surrounded by a whole heard of whales, curious and interactive.

My new found friend and I seemed to connect on many levels. It was refreshing to meet someone like this, who was incidentally a masters student in Medical Philosophy, doing some fascinating research, because we seemed to be invigorated by a discussion about the bigger picture that often seems to be lost on so many who are caught up on the rat race of life.

Perhaps only those who are truly open to the great majesty and force of nature will be even close to expressing how beautiful it is to behold. This is something we both could relate to, and it wasn’t just about an experiment with whales, it was more about recognizing the gift of nature that is there every moment we are aware.

“In the stillness of a single moment of nature doth the power lie”

I never really know what the purpose of the whale’s message was, but perhaps if we love ourselves enough, we can find a part of their wisdom within us.


Angels of the Sea

Whales are creatures of the ocean,
Teachers of gentle motion,
That allow us to see,
The meaning of “being free”,
For they are the angels of the sea.

14-10-15 Another week, another rotation, and a week closer to the final exam of emergency medicine. I usually find starting a new rotation is stressful because at the beginning it’s hard to know all the ‘ins and outs’ of the job. This week was no exception, except I was blessed by being supported by some wonderful colleagues, especially my intern Kate who had such a positive outlook on medicine and life in general!

After feeling so tired from the week just gone, spending extra hours studying for my emeregency medicine fellowship exam which I will sit in February 2016, I decided to catch up on sleep and skip the opportunity of a morning surf. Instead, Sanna and I decided to go to our favourite café in Thirroul to have a coffee and do some study. However, before sitting I felt a strong calling to first go for a ‘nature break’. As far as my logical mind could reconcile, this venture was going to be a walk to the ocean, for the purpose of gaining some inspiration before going back to practicing exam questions.

When walking down to the Thirroul beach I saw that familiar splash in the distant ocean that always makes me think “is that a whale?”. My knee-jerk reaction was to say to Sanna “Hey I think I just saw a whale! Did you see it?”. She usually discounts such suggestions because I forever seem to be saying, “hey I think I just saw a whale!?”. Sanna has grown to be slightly dismissive about these suggesions, but the great majority of times that I’ve suggested this it has turned out to be correct. I keep seeing them and they keep appearing in my life. Today was a case in point.

When we got down to beach front, I went straight to edgy and we could clearly see at least two maginificent playful whales periodically jumping out of the water creating quite a splash. It was an amazing scene to encounter. No matter how far away, or close, one is to a whale in the wild, it is a magnificent thing to be around them. Interestingly the previous night I had a beautiful dream where I saw a humpback whale jumping out of the ocean in full breach. I had forgotten about this dream – but it seemed to have come true~!


Hit by a whale today

Today I was hit by a whale,

She clipped me with the tip of her tail,

With a force that could easily impale, an unwitting surfer,


So magnificent was her breech,

That many a surfer was out of speech,

Looking onwards in amazement and awe,


With a good 10 minute show,

We all watch this graceful creature flow,

Going down and up to the surface with style,


When it came back in a slower pace,

I got to see her “face to face”,

Whilst others had steadily moved out of the way,


All I could think was to say “hi!”,

For it seem too early to say “goodbye”,

But perhaps this was the mistake of the moment?


My memory soon blanked out,

Before I had time to even shout (help?!),

And the next thing I remember was look up towards a friend,


Swiftly brought to shore,

By “Bondi Rescue” and a few more.

I was met by my girlfriend in the ambulance van,


Sent directly to St Vinnies Resus Bay!

“Exclude submersion injury!” I thought I heard them say,

Soon followed by, “hmm, perhaps you’ll live to see another day”,


All know is that I’m lucky to be alive,

I feel grateful for the help form those five, (..and others!),

Now post-concussion in my bed under the covers,


But perhaps real moral is this,

If we see big whale so close we could blow it a kiss,

Stay back at least 30 meters and enjoy its bliss,


Or we may not be so lucky  to see again the shore!


(Thank you for my luck! And thanks to all those who looked after me from the bottom of my heart x )



Today was a most interesting day, because I got hit by a whale whilst enjoying a Bondi morning winters surf. I’m still recovering from concussion but safe. Thanks so much for all the message of concern. I’ve attache some newspaper articles – will write more in due course!


Bishan 🙂


Southern Right Whale (the picture and following whale info with thanks from;

Interesting facts;-

  • They are known as the Right Whales because whale catchers considered them to be the right kind of Whale to catch due to their large size and slow movement.
  • The Whales of this species float when dead.
  • They can swallow 1.5 to 2 tons of zooplankton per day.
  • One female can mate with up to eight males.
  • The Southern Right Whales are believed to have the largest testicles among all mammals. Each of their testicles weighs around 500 kg.
  • Hermanus in South Africa has become one of the world famous Whale watching centers because of this species.

Southern Right Whale Conservation;-

This species is included in the “Least Concern” Category by the IUCN. Their populations are protected by various laws in many places including Australia, Argentina, Chile, Brazil, South Africa and New Zealand. The main threats to the Southern Right Whales include fishing and coastal developments.

News articles about incident;-




Surfer knocked unconscious as 10-metre whale tosses Bondi boarders with its tail

Article by Emma Partridge, taken form Sydney Morning Herald

A surfer who was knocked unconscious at Bondi Beach by a whale’s tail said the last thing he remembered was saying, “Hey, how’s it going?” to the whale which was less then a metre from him.

Bishan Rajapakse, 38, a doctor living in Bondi, was knocked unconscious for 10 seconds before he was dragged to the beach by his friend and a Bondi lifeguard.

“I remember trying to talk to it . . . before I realised I was off my board and on my front,” Rajapakse said.

The Sri-Lankan born New Zealander said he had been surfing at the southern end of the beach for about an hour on Sunday morning when his friend Chris signalled for him to paddle over.

“When I got to him I saw there was this dark, black shadow and it was just massive.

“The whale was moving in like slow motion. It was beautiful and it breached and we could see the barnacles and it was slowly going up and down and turning and it actually made a noise. It was amazing.”

Speaking from his bed at St Vincent’s Hospital, Dr Rajapakse said he had no injuries apart from a slight headache.
“Contacting whales is not what it’s cracked up to be. They look nice and soft but I can’t remember contacting it. Maybe it contacted me.”

He said he had no recollection of being thrown off his board. “My mate Chris was there when I came to and was like ‘Bish, you’ve been hit by a whale’.

Apparently my face was down in the water and then I was talking to one of the Bondi Rescue dudes. Then I was on the shore and in the ambulance before I knew it.”

Rajapakse joked that his encounter with the southern right whale had ruined his plans for brunch. “I’ve got a slight headache but I was really hoping to have brunch. Somehow I don’t think that’s going to happen today.”

The director of the emergency department at St Vincent’s, Gordian Fulde, said the surfer would probably be discharged by the end of Sunday.

– with Emma Partridge