There's something about having a lifeguard around that makes me feel...secure. I'm actually a pretty good swimmer, and honestly, if a shark was attacking me, chances are the lifeguard would look out, say "damn" and call someone to pick up the pieces. Still, I think it's just the idea of someone watching over me. Lifeguards are the keepers of the peace; the enforcers of the rules; an icon of safety on the beach.
If only I could have my own personal lifeguard to follow me around all the time and keep me from drowning. Often, I feel like I'm a little piece if driftwood, floating about in the huge ocean, helpless to control my speed or direction. I'm bobbing on the waves holding my breath each time I go under, and then gasping for every molecule of air I can get each time I get back to the surface. I'm searching for a lifeguard to rescue me, but instead there's a airplane circling over my head with a banner saying "You're on your own, baby!"
I'm pretty sure I used to have a raft, or a body board at least. I suppose I will just have to keep swimming, stay afloat as long as I can, and hope for the best. Who knows? Maybe I'll end up on the shore of a tropical island.
Caren E. Salas