Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Beneath Me


Usually it’s the roof at sunrise, my shoes at school, the beach sand afterward.

But recently, what’s beneath me is water. I talked myself into taking SCUBA lessons. I'm only doing this because it’s on the James Bond syllabus, inspired by a Swedish friend’s pursuit of such 007 skills.

On Sunday, just a foot below the surface—where air was, air—I wondered, did I really care to see what’s beneath me? I’m pretty sure I didn’t. At least not when I practiced letting the regulator drift behind me before reining it back. I like my air supply accessible when I open my mouth.

If I remembered birth, would the worry be reversed? "Oh, no, I’m leaving the water. I’ll have to breathe air!"

Are our lives a continual reversal of fears and inclinations? Once afraid of public speaking, now a teacher. Once inclined to cool climates, now living in the equatorial pacific. Once afraid of diving, now paying to learn.

Beneath me? I have no idea. It’s dark down there.

But that’s why I’m adding a few weights to my belt, cinching it in, and remembering not to hold my breath.
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1 comment:

Garris Elkins said...

Well....I am excited you are learning to SCUBA dive. A little trivia for you. I spent two weeks in the West Indies in the early 70's diving. It was so soon after my dive certification (within 3 days) that I had no card to take on the diving trip! We dove off Bahama without guides, flew to Jamaica and dove with the British Sub-Aqua Club out of Montego Bay and then off for a few days wreck diving in Grand Cayman at Bob Soto's famous lodge. Just before mom and I got married in 1973 I dove most weekends out of Monterey. Now that you are filled with some of dad's history - dive on! It is in some of that DNA that existed in me just before you were born. I haven't dove in years but still have my card. Maybe this will be a tease to drop in someday and dive with my girl.

Love from Dad