Summary of Deep Water
This chapter is an apt elaboration of narrator’s overcoming his hydrophobia which he had got from a misadventure that took place at YMCA pool when he was a young boy.
At the beginning of this chapter we find narrator recounting a misadventure that took place at California beach when he was 3-4 year old where he was knocked down by a strong wave. Once again, he decides to learn swimming at Yakima, which is forbidden by his mother calling the river dangerous and treacherous. She advises him to go to YMCA pool which is much safer than Yakima River.
Narrator starts learning there but he is ridiculed by others for his thin legs. His life takes a twist when he is thrown into the deep end of the pool by a big bully. He tries thrice to come to the surface of the water but fails all the time. He closes his eyes and feels himself on the verge of the death but saved by an instructor in the end.
This misadventure makes him hydrophobic and ruins his life completely. Whenever he puts his feet into water, his old sensation returns. He feels as if he were going to die.
Having been tired of his handicap, he hires a personal instructor and decides to learn swimming again. The trainer puts a belt around his waist and lets him swim back and forth. Within six months, Douglas learns all he could and starts swimming on his own.
He even goes to Lake Wentworth alone where he swims for few miles without being supported by anyone. He overcomes his fear of water with his determination and never-giving up spirit.
This chapter teaches us that we should brush aside all the fear we have and do what we feel like to do.
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