Post #3: Lessons I learned Today: Trip To Fort Sommelsdijk

Last night I was planning to do different things for the next day. It was almost 6 p.m and suddenly I received an invitation from one of my colleagues. She asked me if I wanted to join her on a small, 1-day expedition into the Surinamese Amazon Jungle, in search of an old dutch fort. Everyone knows that I never turn down opportunities like this and without hesitation I said yes!


Fort Sommelsdijk dates back to the 17th century and it’s said that it might have been built after Fort Zeelandia in Paramaribo. It’s located in a very amazing area and can make any adventurous person fall in love with it immediately. This old fort finds itself where two rivers meet. The two rivers are the Commewijne and the Cottica river. It is a very enchanting and calming place to visit. Nothing much is left of the once amazing Sommelsdijk fort. Time and nature were very quick in reclaiming their property.

Today I woke up early, made breakfast and waited to be picked up. After I was picked up, we crossed the Suriname river and entered district Commewijne. We drove for almost 1 hour until we arrived at Plantation Visserszorg, at the vacation home of an amazing architect, who apparently is in love with history. He has an amazing garden and a construction on the Commewijne river. We sat down, drank some tea and juice, had a small talk on history and got a small guided tour around Plantation Visserszorg.

We finally stepped into the boat to go to our main destination. I was sitting at the edge of the boat and I was looking at the beautiful waves and the many beautiful Mangrove trees which stand next to each other like staunch family and friends. I am a nature person and easily get amazed by the complex nature of nature itself. We reached our destination after 1.5 hour and slowly made our way into the amazingly thick Amazon forest in search of the remains of the Sommelsdijk fort. We looked and looked and found different posts made of stone which looked rather contemporary, bottles, both Contemporary as well as old ones. We also found small pieces of porcelain and many iron parts which were used for different purposes. The only intact structure we could find was a very old well. We looked around and screened the area for about 2.5 hours. After all of the searching and walking, we went to the boat and visited two other village plantations named Bakki and Alliance and then returned home. All in all it was a whole day of exercise, learning, discovering and much more.


What I learned Today.

I saw three rivers today, countless types of trees and many animals. I met new people, had a small adventure and most importantly did what I love doing! As I sat in the boat I looked at the water flowing so peacefully, going towards the Atlantic ocean. I saw the trees untouched and going to and fro, as the wind directed them, not hesitating, not even for a moment. I realized one thing. One may fight life as much as one likes, but we are not fully in control of our destiny.

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We do not know what tomorrow holds and we cannot fight destiny. The best thing is to be just like a river. It has its own identity. It can flow into many directions into many creeks and sub-rivers, but ultimately its destination is the ocean.

The lesson would be that one should not try to fight life. Do not make life stressful. Set your goals, and keep them in front of your eyes. Work hard to achieve them, but do not be stressed with the results. Just know that destiny has played its cards and we have to accept where we are after we do our part and pushed our luck as far as possible. There is a famous saying:

” Aim for the moon and if you miss you will land among the stars”

Set your goal, give it your all and be happy with the results, whether you land on the moon or whether you land among the stars.

Another thing I realized today was that the Forest remained untouched and majestic. Although it has to endure heavy rains and strong sunshine. We should also try to be like that. We should not let criticism and hardships touch us and change our mood. We should extract from things like criticism and hardships, those things that would make us a better person, just as the Trees in the forest extract the water from the rain and the energy from the rays of the sun. Even though they have no choice but to endure them, it actually is part of their lives and it makes them better. It makes them who they are. Similarly, Criticism and Hardships will always be part of our lives, we should be wise enough to know that and we should try to make ourselves stronger by utilizing and extracting the things we need, that will make us stronger.

Always remember one thing!

“Adversity Is not there to make us Bitter, adversity is there to make us better”


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Lily Bhagwandin says:

    Abosultely amazing a trip like that, we have to be thankful for our history, it brought us all to this moment, learning from it n see the wonders in nature makes us feel blessed. Thank you Santosh for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for commenting mataji 🙂 I appreciate your kindness 🙂


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