It was lunchtime. By that I mean, like a half hour past lunch and we were still inside a dark aquarium with four 2 year olds. Had it not been for the mermaid, I may have had a panic attack of worry. I do not like to think of my daughters' bellies growling with hunger.
We were making our way down the long circular ramp encased with wall-to-wall glass holding back sharks and fish bigger than my children -- sometimes running to catch up with some toddlers, sometimes stopping to oooh and awww -- when we spotted her.
She came up to the glass with big, bold eyes that weren't scary like the sharks' eyes. They were kind. They were ablaze with purpose. They were zeroed in on one person and one person only:
For what seemed like an eternity to me, but was probably five minutes total -- or ten -- this scuba diver who I only know now as the mermaid, put me in a trance.
By the way she stared at Liana I knew she was trying to communicate with her. So I asked Liana if she could show her how she spins in a circle. Desperate to communicate back, Liana spun.
So did the mermaid. Liana's contagious smile beamed across her face.
That begun a series of mirror like movements. The mermaid clapped her hands, danced, flapped her arms, jumped up and down under water each time after Liana did so herself.
Then, they held their hands up to the glass and blew kisses. I had to drag Liana away to get lunch or else they might have been there all day and all night and forever.
The thing that grabbed me, though, and pulled so hard on my heart was that this event created a crowd that included several other small kids.
But the mermaid never took her eyes off Liana. She never strayed. She only once spun in a circle for another boy, but she was humoring him.
And when we left, this beautiful mermaid swam off continuing her quest to feed the underwater creatures we were there to see.
My imagination ran wild, of course. It always does.
Just fresh from reading "The Alchemist" by Paul Coehlo, and looking at life a bit differently when it comes to our true purpose in life, I was deeply moved by this experience, now constantly wondering about that underwater woman and why she chose Liana to connect with that day.
And, more importantly, how that will influence Liana's future. If it will at all. Or, perhaps, she was always supposed to meet her for a purpose we'll never know.
Regardless, the mermaid made me believe in fairy tale endings again, at least briefly.
Thank you for visiting today.
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