The Paddle Board Rescue of Shame

… when you only have about 10 people who read your blogs but one of them starts to moan that she hasn’t seen one in a while…

So yes, I’ve been rather absent over here lately. I went to Antigua for two weeks to get married, which was rather a big deal, and since I got home I’ve been frantically preparing for my imminent return to teaching, playing Pokémon like a teenage boy, trying to hit my step goals on my new Fitbit and generally eating too much and spending a lot of time drinking coffee with various friends and family members.

So, not much to report. I thought instead I would recount an incident from our holiday which caused hours of hilarity for my friends and family who accompanied us on our trip. This story has been named, appropriately, by my younger sister, as ‘The Paddle Board Rescue of Shame.’

It was a morning like any other at our resort on Antigua. We awoke, made our way slowly to the pool where we claimed sunbeds, enjoyed the less intense heat of the sun on our skin and indulged in a pastry and a coffee before ‘official breakfast.’ When all of our group had arrived, we headed to breakfast and discussed our plans for the day. Some of us were heading to the beach to take advantage of the free water sports gear provided, others were off to the pool to get in some sun worshipping, and some to various local points of interest.

We arrived at the beach and decided that paddle boards were our first activity. I had tried my hand at this a couple of days before and was feeling confident. Some may say overconfident, and we headed out onto the water, laughing and chatting.

But before I knew it, I was somehow the furthest out to see, and I was quickly being swept towards the rocks and the open water. I tried my best to paddle back the way I had come, but my efforts with the paddle were nothing compared to the wind and the current, and soon I was headed around the rocks and out of sight of the beach.

I shouted for help, and panic set in. Convinced I was going to die lost at sea, I sat down on the board and tried to paddle. This did not help. My fiancé sent his younger brother over on a kayak, who was very unconcerned about my plight. To be fair, I probably could have jumped in and swam back towards the beach with the board, but this never entered my panicked mind.

I kept trying to turn myself around and paddle back but I wasn’t making any progress, and I was now completely out of sight of the beach. I concentrated on staying away from the rocks, which I was now convinced I would smash my skull on, before floating out to sea. Probably would have thrown myself in at that point had it not been for my future brother-in-law, who was probably thoroughly fed up with my insanity at that point.

But, before I could take any drastic action, we heard a sound, and rounding the corner at speed was a RESCUE SPEED BOAT. Yep, I got to ride back on a speed boat that said rescue on the side. Not my finest moment, but hey, not everyone gets to ride on a speed boat.

As we neared the beach, my rescuer stopped the boat and looked at me. You getting back on? I looked at him as though he had three heads. Back on the flimsy bit of fibreglass which had allowed me to drift unchecked towards my impending doom and general peril at sea???

‘Of course,’ I replied, through gritted teeth, and I did, paddling my way back to my friends, who greeted me with uproarious laughter and assurances that they would never let me forget my Paddle Board Rescue of Shame.


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