With the last bit of concrete still warm in my belly, I paddled to shore, handed the board back and did some push ups. By push ups I mean fell on all fours because I was numb as something really cold and in need of a nice cuppa tea and a biscuit.
Some legend handed me a towel and a doona and another person guided me to my clothes. All I could think was keep moving and get home to a shower to thaw out. It’s funny what goes through your head in life threatening situations. Self preservation ranks highly but also random stuff for me like “let’s hurry this up so I can get home and read my mate @drandallblythe Dark Days book (that’s no bullcrap cos I just read the first chapter and I struggle with the English language as you know)” & “I can’t wait to have brekkie tomorrow” to “man, ol mate is covered in petrol, I wonder if we are getting high?” Like literally anything to keep the mind occupied from the grim reality possibly facing us. Isis and Paula shot straight to the front of my mind particularly at the moment when the bouy appeared all too slowly. I thought “I’m not very bright am I..? Paula is going to kill me if this water doesn’t.”
Which in all seriousness is a good point. Whilst I have you for my 15 seconds, please don’t do what I did. I only did it cos I weighed up my options for survival coupled with the surrounding support teams gathering rapidly. It was a group effort to rescue that guy. It wasn’t just me. We got lucky. It could have been tragic.
I apologise to the Police and emergency services for potentially making their lives more difficult. I know I’d be cussing me out for being a dingbat if I was them. The first thing I thought upon entering the scene was “I’ve got this.” I was confident to at least get to the voice and keep his hope alive and his head above water. The rest was up to the community.
Spare a thought for how rescue can come in all shapes and sizes. Go out and volunteer for your local community fire brigade, SES, even help out at your old folks home. Do something, anything for someone else without want or need of repayment. Make it a good world. Pull your finger out.