Today as I paddled out it was absolutely calm. The ocean lay before me almost like a mirror and as I stood on my paddle board it was like I was standing on the heavens with only the board between me and the clouds beneath my feet. The water was clear and that depth added to illusion.. It was a little difficult maintaining my balance because this illusion of endless sky made me dizzy looking out with no horizon. I paddled and the only sound was the lapping of the water as my board parted the perfect reflected sky before me. It was so calm I imagined my wake trailing off behind me to the edge of infinity. I paddled on like this for an hour passing squads of surfers waiting sadly for swells, and on occasion, paddling desperately for waves that were too diminutive to ride. They were silent in their vigil. I kept paddling. I had immersed myself when I started but began to sweat in the breathless warmth as I paddled. Before me was a patch of water which broke the serene surface and there I came upon a swarm of cabbage head jellyfish. They were in numbers too great to count their bells undulating as they moved in the column of water. Because there were so many it seemed they were forming ranks; bulbous like so many helmets there were lines and lines of individuals forming a phalanx of watery sentinels or maybe it was just a trick my eyes were playing on me trying to make patterns of all that I saw.
As I turned to return there was simply a puff of breeze and the world changed. The sun breached from behind the veil of clouds in the east and it was if the world had awoke from slumber. There were whoops from bathers on shore as they reveled in small waves. The surface was no longer a mirror but shattered into a more prismatic normalcy. In front of me tiny bait fish broke the surface in unison just beyond the nose of my board escaping, if only briefly, that hunger which pursued them from below. There were great swaths of ocean where I could see the effects of eddies of wind; smooth over just in front and beyond that a band of tiny ripples which extended to the edge of my vision. I listened as the world awoke, then dug deeply with my paddle, and headed for home.