I Remember When - Personal Narrative

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I Remember When - Personal Narrative

It was the first weekend in September. The summer holidays were over,

and the schools had started back. I was on the beach for the first

time after a long week at work.

As Stratton was such a small Cornish town, there were very few people

on the beach. My next-door neighbour and drinking partner, Hamish

Pengelly was just leaving the beach after walking his dog, Graham

Smith; the new owner of Stratton Manor was on the beach watching his

son, Charlie, playing in a rubber dingy in the water. Also, Samantha

Creeme, the mechanic for the nearest town, Bude, was on lifeguard


It was one of those pleasant days where it was warm, but quite windy.

It had become slightly windier as the day approached mid afternoon,

but it was bearable. I sat at the edge of the beach in my fleece

reading a Dorothy Dunnet novel.

I probably would have stayed in this position for the rest of the day,

if it weren't for a faint shriek I could hear coming from the


I looked up from my book and I could see Charlie Smith, rapidly being

dragged out by the current, waving his arms and the air and shouting

recklessly for help.

Stratton is famous for its currents. Only one person has died here in

the past decade, but before the lifeguard system had been developed,

the numbers were much higher. The strength of the current was due to

the canal, which creates a massive rip tide, so the beach has to have

permanent supervision during the warmer months.

In the distance, I could see Samantha Creeme dragging her life

surfboard to the waters edge. I instinctively ran down the lower beach

to where Graham ...

... middle of paper ...

...sisted that she would be able to paddle back on her

surfboard, as she was specially trained for this type of a situation.

The paddle back was much more strenuous than the paddle there, as this

time we had to fight against the current. But something, I don't know

what, probably adrenalin, kept us moving on. It felt as though my arms

were going to fall off, but all the time, I kept thinking to myself,

'You have to keep moving on. Lives are at steak here.'

We finally reached the shore. Somebody must have seen what was going

on, as when we reached the waters edge, a towel was immediately

wrapped around each of us, and we were all taken off to an ambulance.

I looked back from the top of the beach, as I remembered that Samantha

must have still been fighting her way back against the waves. But, she

was nowhere to be seen.

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