Rip Tide


Eric was standing on the boardwalk looking at the claim ocean while his fishing rod dangled in the water. It was a beautiful morning going into the afternoon and he thought that he would go for a refreshing swim if the weather permits. But before he does he is going to grab some lunch. After eating lunch the sun was still at its highest point for the day. He asked a few of his friends to come and swim with him in the ocean. Each person he asked said not now, they’ve just finished eating. Most of them observing a rule that were taught to them by their swimming instructor while in grade school. The rule is to that one should digest the food before engaging in any swimming activity. It is said that if you do not wait until the food is digested it makes you susceptible to getting a stomach cramp while swimming. Eric did not believe in such fairy tales and thought that those types of warnings were concocted to scare children from engaging in behavior that might get them hurt.

Erich found a spot on the beach and removed his clothing stripping down to his swimming trunks and went into the ocean. The waves were calm so Eric did not have to exert himself as much. He went out about a hundred meters away from the shore. Swimming in the calm waters Eric felt a piece of mind.

But there was one thing that Eric didn’t anticipate. It was that just because something is calm and tranquil on the surface, there could be turmoil beneath. The current under the ocean’s surface was stirring up and it created a rip tide and the under tow started to take Eric further out to sea.

Eric did not notice that he was slowly being pulled further and further out to sea; but his friends could see it happening from the shore. They were frantic and were shouting at Eric to come back into the shore. Someone had the idea of getting on the jet ski and haul him in; but at that precise moment access to the jet skies was unavailable because they were still at the refueling point. They could only watch as Eric was being sucked out to sea.

While Eric was slowly being sucked out to sea, he heard the voices of his friends shouting at him from the shore and when he looked towards the shore and saw how far it was; then Eric realized what was happening. Eric a strong swimmer didn’t panic, instead he remembered the survival tip about not fighting and swimming against a strong current because the swimmer will end up losing the battle every time. Instead the swimmer would have to swim across the current. So this is what Eric started to do; he began swimming across the rip tide with the hopes of gradually making it back to shore.

However the afternoon meal that Eric consumed and not heeding the rule of waiting to digest the food before engaging in swimming activity hit him like a ton of bricks. While making the averse action of swimming across the rip tide Erich had a severe case of a stomach cramp. The stomach cramp made Eric double over and he sank like a stone beneath the ocean’s waves.

As Eric sank down beneath the waves he must have had a disassociation episode. A kind of out of body experience when the physical body is experiencing some type of trauma; the mental or mind can separate allowing the person relief from the pain of the trauma. While in that state and physically sinking deeper under the ocean’s surface he thought he saw a sunken ship with a hole in its side and he can hear music coming from the ship’s banquet hall. Then there was a procession of people walking into the hole in the ship’s side to attend the exquisite banquet taking place inside the ship.

The people that gathered together in the ships banquet hall were drowned victims. At some point or circumstance they drowned in that particular area of the sea. The essence of the drowning victims created a spiritual barrier and the souls of the drowned victims are wondering around at the bottom of the ocean in a group like a community. Now it seems that they are welcoming another drowning victim into the community of the drowned. Eric has resigned himself to the fact that he is facing his fate and that the ocean’s drowning victims are welcoming him into their realm.

In as much as the drowned has their realm; Eric’s body was still in the physical sinking deeper under the ocean’s surface. There are many wonders that lie beneath the ocean and many of them are undiscovered by man. There are creatures that are the subject of many tales told by Sailors who escaped certain death with the aide of such undiscovered creatures.

One of those undiscovered creatures is the mermaid; and there was one who was witnessing Eric’s demise and she took pity on him and decided to intervene. The mermaid grabbed Eric and placed her mouth over his mouth while holding his nose. While her mouth was over his, she inhaled and when she inhaled the water that filled Eric’s lungs was sucked out. The water went through Eric’s mouth into her mouth and once in the water was in the mermaid’s body, it was discarded from the mermaid’s body through her gills. Then the mermaid exhaled pulling the oxygen from the surrounding water into her gills, through her mouth, into Eric’s mouth and into his lungs.

This was a repetitive action that kept Eric alive. While she was doing it she started taking Eric to the ocean’s surface. The mermaid took Eric to a buoy and placed him on top of it and then she dived back underneath the ocean’s surface undetected by man’s instruments. It wasn’t long before the Coast Guard who was dispatched to search for Eric’s body discovered that he was lying on top of the buoy alive.

© 2018 All Rights Reserved

For Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo prompt challenge


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