Thursday, November 08, 2018
Oranjestad, Aruba
He’s in his late 20’s and of Asian descent.  He’s traveling with a man and a woman.  The woman is his mother, but the man doesn’t seem old enough to be his father.  Most likely a brother.  You see them everywhere together on the ship, the 2 brothers, even at the pool.  But going to the pool is no easy feat for them.  This fellow is in a wheelchair.  One of those fancy power machines.  He controls it’s movement with his chin because he has no movement in his arms and legs.  So going to the pool is a time consuming activity.  But props to the cruise line and the deck attendants for making it possible for this fellow to even get in the water.  I just happened to be there today when he was going for a dip.  It’s not a quick process, not by any stretch of the imagination, and it takes a village.  By the time it was done it had taken 3 deck attendants as well as Mom and Brother to get him submerged.
It was stinkin’ hot today, and the pool was as warm as bathwater.  A nice change from what it’s been up till now.  The young fella and his brother met the deck attendants at the adult pool.  The attendants started assembling the lift that would pick him up and lower him into the water.  There was a hitch.  A piece was missing, so they had to wait for 15 minutes for a 3rd attendant to bring the missing piece.  It was an important part too, the battery which would provide power to make the lift move.  Brother lifted him out of the wheelchair ever so gently and Mom helped get him situated on the lift.  Hat on and securely strapped in, then off he went.  They lowered him slowly into the water.  His first comment when his feet touched was ‘hey, it’s really warm today’.  They lower him till he’s submerged up to his chest.  ‘Lower’ he tells them...his shoulders...’lower’ he says again...when his neck is in the water he tells them to stop.  He sits there enjoying the refreshing water, even though it’s none too cool.  His brother sits in the water with him.  I don’t know how long they lasted because I had to leave the pool area because it was just too hot.  For him...heaven on earth!
No complaints from me today!  Life is good and watching this young fellow enjoy something that is simple for me and yet so difficult for him reminds me of how fortunate I am.
Good bye, Aruba!