It happened on Monday, July 12, 2021 in the morning, I woke up earlier than usual, the sun was already shining, it was 6:40 when a mosquito biting me forced me out of my sleep. I looked around for him, determined to make him pay for his audacity but the very shrewd one slipped out of my sight.
I got up, went to the bathroom, and decided to take advantage of the fact that I was already on my feet to go swimming before the sun goes higher and gets hotter. I put on my boardshorts and a long-sleeved shirt, grabbed my goggles and coconut oil. I took my crutches and looked for the keys, I put on the mask and sunglasses but decided to leave my cell phone and wallet, likewise my sandals and went out to the garage barefoot, there was no point in wearing shoes because my feet would only get dirty with wet sand from the beach.
I secured my crutches to the bike with bungee cords, unlocked and opened the sliding garage door, put the house keys in the compartment under the seat, started the bike and waited a minute for it to warm up, got out, closed the gate, and headed for the nearest beach, Nusa Dua beach, on the island of Bali, Indonesia.
The morning was cool and without traffic. It took me few minutes to get to my destination and parked. I released my crutches from the bungee cords, rolled them up, and tucked them under the seat along with the house keys. I took the little bottle of coconut oil and headed out to sea.
The beach was deserted except for a Muslim man sitting on the sand. The sky was a beautiful azure blue with white clouds scattered on the horizon with just a huge black cloud that seemed to serve as an umbrella protecting me from the sun, advancing on its way very slowly. I noticed that it was high tide, and the sea was a little rougher than usual with more intense waves but nothing serious, that beach can be said to be harmless.
I walked to the shoreline, I dug a hole in the dry sand with my right foot where I planted the tips of my crutches, then I covered them with sand and compacted it with my feet so that they would be close together in a vertical way. There I hung my sunglasses, my mask, and my shirt.
I stretched and warmed up my arms and legs muscles for a few minutes, put on my goggles, and hobbled slowly into the water. When the water reached my chest, I remembered that I did not apply coconut oil on my body as I usually do, to avoid the itchiness caused by some jellyfish in the sea and that I still had the little plastic bottle in my pocket.
And that's when the drama started.
My right hand reached down and opened the flap of my pocket, I grabbed the bottle and I felt how once out the bottle quickly found its way to the surface due to the buoyancy the air inside. Unbeknownst to me, my hand also took out the key of the motorcycle and once it was out of the pocket the strong waves caused it to slip between my fingers and went to the floor of the sea.
I panicked immediately and my whole being got altered as a thousand thoughts passed through my mind all at once.
I have no duplicate, even worse, there is no duplicate! It doesn't exist! not even the owner has one.
I don't have my cell phone with me to ask for help!
My wallet is at home!
The house keys are under the seat and without the motorcycle key I don't have access to them!
Without my phone I cannot translate to those without English knowledge!
If I needed to go somewhere to get help it would be a pain to walk barefoot for longer than one block.
A real tragedy was unfolding rapidly.
In my mind I talked to the only one that's always with me "No Father, no please!" I repeated with desperation while with my feet I tried to keep my position fixed in that place so as not to lose the location where the key fell, but the intense waves prevented it. At the same time, I tried to search for it with my feet, which I quickly realized it useless and it worried me even more to think that by doing so I was potentially burying it more and more in the sand, so I stopped doing it.
I dived several times hoping to see it, but the water was very murky, without clarity, and each wave stirred the sediments of the sand preventing me from seeing the bottom. The waves, swell, and the current moved me to and fro without ceasing. The cruel reality set in and after recognizing the uselessness of my efforts I stopped. Then, resigned to my fate, I thought ... at least do what you came to do, go swimming.
I swam as usual, but my mind could not put aside the seriousness of what happened. I was in a real bind, a major one. I kept remembering how many times God has rescued me from such difficulties in the past and with redoubled faith and fervent prayers I implored him, begged him, supplicated my Heavenly Father to help me find it.
With reaffirmed faith I returned to the place where I previously made a mental note of the location. Fortunately, my crutches remained planted on the beach and served as a point of reference again. About 7 steps away from the shoreline and at about chest-depth. Right where the water was messed up and visibility to the bottom was almost nil.
Repeating incessant prayers heaven bound, I submerged myself repeatedly, constantly repositioning as I was getting moved in all directions, always looking towards where my crutches were to realign myself. As I submerged, I struggled to sharpen my already impaired eyesight so that I could see the floor through the murky water. Each try got me shorter of air, each puff lasted less and less.
On one occasion I saw something dark in contrast to the light colour of the sand at the bottom, I picked it up, but it turned out to be a black stone. Having the dark cloud above, was preventing the direct passage of sunlight, which made visibility more difficult. Several minutes passed.
In one of those dives, very briefly, I glimpsed something dark beyond the veil of sediments, once more, I submerged, in a matter of seconds the visibility was blurred again, I thought I had already lost it, however I stretched my arm in that direction, when I felt contact, I closed my fist, I brought my hand to my eyes, I opened my fingers and… there it was. I had the key in my hand again.
My heart exploded in praises of gratitude to the Almighty, I reiterated how much I love Him for being so good to me, I expressed the great honour He deserves, and I confirmed my enormous admiration and gratitude. Once again, He worked a miracle for me.
With all the odds stacked against me, knowing how difficult it is to recover something that falls on the sand of the beach even when it is dry. At that time, I understood recovering something from the murky seabed, beaten by the waves, was practically impossible. But not for Him.
I clearly remembered...
"Jesus looked at them and said: For men this is impossible, but for God everything is possible."
I am not alone; He is always with me.
I know He is there because when I talk to Him in prayer, He answers.