Journalism is a career full of challenges and hard work. For those whose life and heart revolves around news and camera, journalism is like oxygen for survival.
Similarly for me, those days of media life is like a treasure box, of which I don’t want to loose a single jewel.
This story of fisherman’s of Chennai lies close to my heart. As i actually faced all the challenges they come face to face with.
To begin with I remember it took me so much of running behind the boss to get his permission to go for the story. Then finally when I got permission from office, it took me days to get approval from fisherman authority to shoot with fisherman for a whole day, that too in the sea. The reason the authority where reluctant on not allowing me was being a women journalist. The reason might sound dumb but yes this was the reason! I somehow got the permission after pleading in there office for 15 days.
Then came the day of shoot. It was around second week of February 2016. Me and my video journalist started our day with their village, which went off well. Families of fisherman where loving and caring. Though we didn’t understood each other’s language but yet they showed love in every possible way. We got to learn about ritual the family do before sending the male members of the family in the sea. Sadly, we came to know
that many of the family members who went happily in the sea, never came back. So the family believes in worshiping the sea to take care of the people.
Though we learned about so many rituals but didn’t realized it’s importance until we faced the tough situation in the sea the next day.
Finally, the day went well in the village and we were back to hotel with the excitement to face the real challenge tomorrow in the sea.
Next day, before the dawn we were all set for the big and the most awaited day. We reached the harbour around 3 and it took the fishermen almost 3 hours in preparation before we could actually start sailing. We started our journey around 6 in the morning. The morning sun, sea and the ship. Everything seemed peaceful and calm when we bid bon-voyage to the shore. We started shooting and everything was going good other than the turbulence we where facing. It was actually very difficult for the camera person to take steady shots and difficult for me to keep my self safe and happy with the mic in my hand, standing on the edge of the ship.
There was no time to re-shoot so I had to be perfect in what ever I say and do. Somehow, we managed it well.
But, everything was not as smooth as it seemed. My video journalist started feeling sick, that may be because sea-sickness. He was unable to stand for almost two hours. Facing the situation, i somehow managed to handle camera and mic both (thanks to the photography classes back in college!).
After almost two hours, my camera person took charge of shooting again. We started our shoot, throwing net, catching fish, cooking fish on the ship, relishing the taste of the freshly caught fish. Everything went well and before it’s too late we decided to start our journey back to the shore.
Just 10 minutes later we started facing more turbulence. It was rough and was thrilled. Fishermen looked relaxed initially but tension took over their face as the tempestuous waves were not stopping.
There were no storm alert notice from government, none from authority. Everyone was worried. There was a time when there was all silence on the ship and it seemed only the Stormy waves where shouting and hating our presence there.
The waves where so high that we were never on our place. Wave made us jump high and higher. I was praying, my mom and dad’s face flashed infront of me. I recalled playing joyfully with my sister’s. Every negative feeling came to my mind. I thought I am never going to meet my family again.
But we survived…
The storm was there for almost 45 mins after which it was again a peaceful way back to shore.
It may be a matter of everyday for fisherman but for me it was the very first experience. Storm without alert took a toll on me and I got scared like hell.
Today, I am happy that I took the challenge, I faced the situation that has added more positivity in me. Today, I am more sensitive toward fisherman and all those who keep their life on stake to earn the bread.
Life is not easy, so every time you find yourself in difficult situation, remember there are many other who are actually keeping their life on stake to survive.
Watch the video,
*In the video you will not find out how much difficulty we faced. I remained calm throughout the shoot.
*Journalism is tough than it seems.
*Courtesy- Zee media