Free Spirited and Free At Sea

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July 31, 2019
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August 29, 2019

Free Spirited and Free At Sea

I was out of action for the last 10 days, due to an incident that needed attention and care. All’s well now but it has left me with some rock solid lessons and I wish to share them with you all:

  • Your health is always a priority, please don’t ignore it.
  • The family comes first specially the parents and parents in law. Be there for them when they need you; remember they have been your support system.
  • Happiness is in living a balanced life; it can’t be just professional or high on only personal aspects.
  • Its okay not to be too ambitious, peace of mind is a priority.
  • Never compare any person’s journey; each one has a path that he or she carves for self. There’s no scope for being judgemental at all!
  • Your beauty and wealth will fade but what remains is the work that you did that touched others’ lives and made a difference!
  • You don’t need to explain yourself to anyone, no justification is ever needed; the ones who believe in you will be there with you; to others it’ll never matter.
  • Faith, gratitude and positivity will never go out of fashion.
  • Love unconditionally and express empathy.
  • Count your blessings…. always!

I shared these thoughts with my professional group; the Indian Women in Hospitality as I believe we all need such reminders in trying times; you never know the impact that it can have or the difference it can make. After all that’s what matters isn’t it? a timely word of assurance. Very seldom do we take time to introspect and take stock of our life’s journey and priorities. All the ladies shared their own mantras and appreciated the wake up call.

While this was going on in my mind; I came across a message sent to me by another dear friend Ms. Saleha Shaikh, Head, Women’s Wing, The Maritime Union of India. I am a part of the fraternity, a member of the MUI-WW and a proud recipient of the honour from them as well. I thought it was right on my part to contribute to the cause and help make the plea impactful. I am quoting the message shared with me here:


(A campaign by MUI-WW under the leadership of Mr Amar Singh Thakur, for the freedom of innocent Indian seafarers)

Dear kind-hearted reader,

Our country recently celebrated 73 years of Independence. This digital plea campaign is an effort to bring back our Seafarers, who are stuck at sea for no fault of theirs. Our innocent sailors also deserve to be FREE AT SEA.

Braving storms and tough waters is second nature to our brave seafarers. But their challenges do not end with sea storms. The spate of incidents in recent times that involve the arrest/ capture of innocent seafarers by foreign governments, has increased manifold.

Our seafarers are held up in Iran, Gibraltar, Dubai, Ghana, Indonesia and many other corners of the world. Did you know that about 200 Indian seafarers alone are bidding time in foreign jails? Hundreds of others are held up at sea, with little or no sign of hope. That sailor stuck at sea, held hostage or arrested despite being innocent, could be YOUR husband, brother, sister, friend or acquaintance. It’s time to wake up and make our voices heard.

Our former Foreign Affairs Minister – Late Smt. Sushma Swaraj did everything in her might to rescue many of our Indian Seafarers caught in similar situations. She used the power of social media and made an impact that changed many lives. Inspired by her promptness, goodness and faith in social media, the MUI-WW urges you to join in this simple campaign that might act as a small drop of hope in a large ocean of uncertainty. We urge seafarers and their families to join us in making this campaign matter as much our seafarers do.

To be a part of the FREE AT SEA campaign, you need to follow these simple steps:

  1. Take a picture of yours with your hands folded as in ‘Namaste’. This sign shows humility and is a sincere request to send our sailors back home. Children can also participate.
  2. Post your image in the comments section or you may whatsapp it to +91-8433884890
  3. Tag two other seafarer community members or friends who you think will care. You may even tag people outside of our seafarer community. After all, we are all bound by humanity.
  4. Share the post on your wall with the hashtag #FREEATSEA and #MUIWW

So fold your hands, take a photograph and post it NOW. We look forward to your support for #FREEATSEA

The plea shared online by MUI-WW did have an effect on me, many are participating and I wanted to be a part of it too and found this medium to reach a few more individuals. I urge all my readers and followers to be a part of the campaign and support our seafarers. I must also thank each one of you for strengthening the campaign with your contribution. This becomes your ‘One Good Turn’ for the day; a mantra that I learnt as a Girl Guide and which continues to be my guiding light.

Dr. Laxmi Todiwan
Dr. Laxmi Todiwan
Founder Indian Women in Hospitality. She is a Professor, Corporate Trainer, Motivational Speaker and a Blogger. A multiple award winning hospitality professional with a career spanning over two decades; people engagement, training and development are close to her heart. She writes for hospitality journals, online platforms and columns in the local newspapers. Married to a Master Mariner she loves to write on the maritime industry as well as the lives and relationships of the fraternity. She expresses her thoughts on her blog and website,

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