- English (US)
- Français (FR)
I have pushed myself very hard on this two hundred forty mile expedition adventure with my small trimaran single person kayak. On the third day my brain fogs over and I drop into a deep pool of hallucinations that replaces most, but not all, reasoning or decision making ability. In the late afternoon, I find myself lost and disoriented in the edge of the Everglades and the Gulf of Mexico wondering how I got here. Panic pounces on me and in the distance I imagine the Rider of the Pale Horse coming for me.
Slowly, I accept my expedition is over and a new challenge has emerged—survival and with luck, rescue. I regain my composure and a slight amount of reasoning ability. Sometime later, I realize dark is coming and I have not been eaten by crocs, gators, pythons or bitten by other snakes — only mosquitoes, and settle into the idea of living through the night. I am lucid enough to understand hallucinations of my own design have created this challenge and I must strive to hold onto the remaining five percent of reasoning ability or die from being stupid.
I activate my ResQLink+ GPS and the bright beautiful flashing strobe gives me comfort as I turn on the ACR C-light attached to my PFD. When I punch the help button on my tracking device, I drop and lose it in the water. I also activate a hand-held SOS signaling device and hold it to reflect off the mangroves. I have silent people around me — all are hallucinations. When I go to talk or touch them, they crumble into ash and sink into the water. In the early cloak of night, a hallucination, unlike the others approaches and speaks to me. My confidence is not high it is a real person. I set a trap. When it gets near enough, I will touch it and watch it disappear like all the others. I startle when it touches me first. I feel its touch. Odd that. I spring my trap and touch him back. It does not dissolve.
In shock, I touch again — it’s a real person. My rescuers, other boaters in the event, load me in their small boat and maintain contact with the United States Coast Guard and the EMS Everglades Rangers. I am exhausted, yet still able to communicate through my continuing hallucinations as my rescuers care for me en route to Flamingo where EMS evaluates, then provide transport to a Dade County hospital. My recovery period has given me ample time to reflect on and be thankful for the excellent safety equipment that saved my life. When on the water I always carry redundant and proper safety equipment and hold close and secure my trusted ResQLink+ Personal Locator Beacon to my constantly worn Personal Flotation Device. Now I know the true worth of my equipment, especially the ResQLink+.
Thank you ACR.
Learn how the ...