July 6, 2015
Davy Jones was so enamored by the sea that he carved out his own heart after having betrayed her. Other stories dictate that it was a woman (not the ocean) that he yearned for, a sea nymph by the name of Calypso. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest touches on each of these. Regardless of the version you choose to accept, both stories end the same way. Jones locks his heart away in a chest. That way, he would feel no grief after turning his back on his true love and he would fall for no other. It’s one of the most captivating love stories I’ve ever heard in my life.
I was always intimidated by the sea. Not knowing how to swim nor stay afloat sort of kept me away from it. I’d get lost in the ocean when I stared at it too long. I’d turn away before I fell prey to its daunting waves and hypnotic sounds.
I’d imagine myself falling in. Being dragged by a rip current, my body thrashing about with the harsh push-and-pull of the water around me. I can’t breathe. And my eyes burn from the sting of saltwater. I search desperately for an escape from this hell. My body temperature drops—I can’t tell if I’m shaking out of fear or from the cold—and what feels like a million tiny daggers pierce right through my lungs. My fingers go numb, my view fades to black. And finally, a Great White swoops in for the kill. In one single bite, he crushes my fragile, 98-pound body with his powerful, 300-toothed jaw.
Well, that’s what I’d see in my head.
But nowadays I find it hard to stay away. The beach is somewhat of a safe haven; it quiets the body and awakens the soul. I don’t mind letting my mind wander while I look out at the vast unknown. I think about how these waters connect us to all of mankind, past and present. I imagine the country borders I’d hit if I traveled straight ahead, no twists and no turns. I gaze at the abundance of water out there and find it amusing that it cannot alleviate thirst. The ocean is home to millions of species, many of which we have yet to discover, depict, or name.
Whenever it has been too long since I’ve visited the beach, I listen to a playlist of ocean waves. To lull myself to sleep, or to keep me at bay while I get a yoga sequence in. To allow me to concentrate as I edit manuscripts and articles for clients, and to inspire me when I am writing original content of my own.
I ask a lot of the ocean nowadays. And like any loving grandmother, she offers me her wisdom.
I’ve never been a fan of the warm weather, but I find myself spending more and more time at the beach. I don’t always take a dip, and rarely do I venture any deeper than four feet. Simply being in the presence of the sea is enough. And while I can’t say I’ve reached Davy’s level of admiration, I have a better understanding of his love for something “as changing and harsh and untamable as the sea.”
I walk across the sand now with open arms and an open heart. As the waves break shore, they ask me to join them.
Now, I do so willingly.
© Scappiamo, 2015