I had made a scene, it was evident. Everyone was staring, the children were pointing and the pirates were whispering to one another. But for the first time all year I had kicked off all my cares as I did with my clothes. I ran upto the top deck of the ship. If they didn’t want to join me, so be it. I was happy to go it alone.
The sun was high in a sky void of clouds, its beams darkening my skin more and more with every moment I stood in it. There was nothing around except sea. Deep, blue Mediterranean Sea, which seemed to collide with the soft blue of the sky over there in the distance. I looked down, over the edge of the ship and thought ‘fuck, this is high’, I shook my head to myself and turned back, everyone was still staring. All heads on deck turned up to look at me. I had caused a scene and now I had to live up to my word. My heart sank a little and then a little more as I told me self to close my eyes and jump. ‘Just close your eyes and jump. Just close your eyes and jump,’ I took a strained breath in; the hot air burned my nostrils. I farted – It was a side effect of nervousness.
I closed my eyes, ‘just close your eyes and jump,’ I stepped up onto the ledge that stood before me, ‘just close your eyes and jump,’ I opened my eyes. ‘Ah,’ this new height, this entire 5 ft and 7 inches extension was a deal breaker.
“Chaneen you’re crazy,” I heard one of my girls shout. I agreed momentarily and decided they, nor anyone else on this ship, could judge me.
“She’s not going to do it,” I heard another say. My head jerked back and looked scornfully at the worried faces that were determining my fate. Who was she to tell me I wasn’t going to do it, that I couldn’t do it. Was I the one stood beside her on the middle deck of the ship looking up at myself? I could do more than she..
The fall was peaceful, until the adrenaline exploded inside me. The waves of hot air caressed me tenderly; I lifted my arms so I could fly before I landed. That was a mistake caused by my divided attention. The heart that had sunk a short few second ago had now arisen and situated itself in my throat before working its way into my head. The crash was not unlike the adrenaline explosion that threw me off the edge of that ship. Submerged in water a fizzing began in my throat and nose; it was like pepper but apparently it was only the salt in the water. I could not feel a ground to push my feet against to fly back through the water in the opposite direction. I could not find any air, I was drowning and the deceit of adrenaline made me feel more alive than ever before. I opened my eyes. I could see a navy blue surface. Still struggling to swim upward I tilted my head as much as I could, I saw the sky, I saw a bird or two and I could breathe again.
“DUDE!” I never say dude. “Dude. That was awesome” I shouted looking up to the three round blurs that were various shades of brown. I wiped my eyes and blinked. “Amazing. That was amazing.”
“Wait there, let me get a picture” one of them said. I ignored that request because I still did not have my 20/20 vision back, the pepper was burning my nose and throat with every breathe in and I was still quite a distance from the ship.
I was a jelly fish getting back to the ship. There were people climbing up and down the ladder, having conversations on the ladder and taking pictures on the ladder. Surely they were taking the piss. Surely they just saw the jump from the top deck that none of them had experienced, endured and, might I add, suffered. I needed to get back onto the ship. A man swam passed me from behind and somehow mounted the wall of the lower deck and climbed on. How on earth? I grabbed through the crowd onto the ladder, my face almost half an inch under some lady’s buttocks. I head-butted her softly to encourage her to move, she looked down and I looked up and kept moving towards her. She had no choice but to move upwards.
I was greeted by the smiles of my fellow staring passengers and a pat on the back of a very young very handsome pirate. He said something in Turkish; I said yes with a nod and smiled. The stares, I didn’t mind so much anymore, at least now there was a reason.