Recently I was on the receiving end of some “Angelic” aid. On a recent trip to Mexico I did something foolish. I know I am more book smart than street smart so it wasn’t a total surprise when I found myself snorkeling in a shallow reef with sea urchins looming before me. I had some moments of panic as I saw the water becoming shallower and shallower while I tried to make my way back into shore over the reef.
Dimly, like hearing a fire alarm when you are sleeping, I realized I could hear people shouting while I was underwater. In a moment of clarity I realized, “They must be shouting at me!” I poked my head out of water and saw that yes indeed they were shouting for me to stop swimming further. A kind man swam over and helped me over the reef that I was stuck on. By this time I had multiple sea urchin spines in my left hand, and the right side of my body was cut up without being seriously hurt. The kind people at a local restaurant removed the bigger spines and told me that I could leave the sea urchin spines in my hands and that they would come out or eventually dissolve with time. They could also be taken out with a needle but it has to be done very carefully as it is easy to push the urchin spines even deeper.
When I called my hotel operator to get some vinegar, which we had read online could help, she offered to send their security officer who had training with first aid. I could see on his name badge that his name was Angel. When he saw my hand he offered to take out the spines with a needle but then realized he didn’t have one in his kit. Unusually, I had thrown in a sewing kit and a little baggy of band-aids and anti-bacterial salve into my luggage. He spent the next hour and half removing 18 sea urchin spine fragments from my hand.
I was so impressed with his patience and kind demeanor. Some of the spines took 20 minutes each of careful probing to remove and he never once showed any sign of hurry or fatigue. I tried to do my part my being a good patient and keeping things light. I felt so fortunate to have such a caring person sent my way. I realized, sometimes you get to be the angel (see Rainy Day Rose) and sometimes you need an Angel. How nice that it works both ways!