My partner is a surfer. I’m that pitiful excuse for a surfer, the boogie-boarder. He swims out to sea and rides the great waves standing up. I stand up to my waist in the sea and ride the smaller waves lying down. But I love it just as much as he does, and it’s something we can do together.
After we were all introduced properly to the Cetaceans, and had got over our shame and embarrassment, they offered to help us have more fun in the sea – because of course, they’re the experts. They were so kind, especially with nervous sorts, like me. They prescribed some bodymod to improve my buoyancy and strengthen my shoulders, so now I don’t feel so vulnerable in the water. I might even try stand-up surfing one of these days. My partner is laughing – he doesn’t believe me.
The dolphins are usually around when people are surfing, and they love to join in, or take you for rides. And on the rare occasions that someone gets into trouble, they bring them ashore.
On one occasion my partner and I got kitted out with gills and went diving with them, and it’s such a magical world down there. And when we got tired, they towed us. One of them was doing a running commentary on the regeneration of the ocean, and the rest would join in, or contradict, or make funny comments or erupt into a musical chorus, and I was almost choking because they were so funny.
The beaches we go to are pretty safe, because the tides are controlled. There are other surfing beaches where there is no control. There was a big lobby in the early days: ‘Don’t nurse-maid us!’ ‘Leave us a bit of danger!’ And we all agreed that was fair enough – if you love the feeling of being close to death, then why shouldn’t you experience that? So there are still plenty of places in the world where you can risk your life if you choose to do so. And plenty of places off-world, too.
And that’s the whole thing, isn’t it? – choice. The thing is for everyone to be clear on what that choice is. So if your partner likes to risk their life, then they need to be open about that with you – and usually, people are pretty good about that kind of thing these days. And if you don’t want to live with a partner who risks their life, then you go your separate ways and wish each other well.
© Sue J Davis 2015
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