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Carpe the Carp.



I saw a fish on vacation that made me realize it was closest in personality to me. Not an exotic Mahi Mahi. Nope. Not even a treacherous Barracuda. I am closest in disposition to…yes, that’s right: the Caribbean Sea Carp.

Have you seen one of these before?

They are funny looking. And just plain funny.

They like to get out in the sandy parts of the coral reefs and roll around.

My wife and I brought our goggles and snorkeled on Seven Mile Beach at Grand Cayman last week, and I wanted to see “Bigger Fish” than the ones flapping along the shoreline.

So out I went. No life jacket. No flippers even. The water was SUPER clear. And out about 200 yards there were buoys tied off (and weighed down) to the ocean bottom.

There were sea urchins and prickly things everywhere, so I was cautious not to put my feet down anywhere. My goggles allowed me to see everything resting on the bottom.

Whoseits and whatsits galore.

Then, I spotted the big, beastly tumbler that is the beloved Sea Carp.

He blended into the orangish, golden ocean sand quite well. But, his movements gave him away. As I approached him, he rolled and spun over and over again in pure delight. I put my hand out, and he didn’t even try to swim away like the other (smarter) fish. He just kept spinning, reaching into coral, knocking up sand and making the water dusty. I signaled for Leah to join me out there, but the urchins weren’t too inviting without flippers. So, I paddled around out there as long as I had strength and eventually told the thirty-pound bumbler goodbye.

When I got back to the shoreline, I exaggerated the carp’s size to everyone around us, but I knew what I saw. He was quite the spectacle; his aloofness to all those two-legged giants was quite appealing, I thought.

It got me to thinking about humans. Humans. Our purpose. The way we’re made. It made me smile that the Sea Carp resonated so deeply. He just wanted to enjoy the coral, food, and waves; he let them move him around constantly. I thought he had the right idea. Maybe we shouldn’t fight waves all day, everyday? Maybe rolling around and enjoying what’s set before me isn’t so bad? I appreciate God giving all that He has already.

If I’m like any fish, I’d say this fish in the Caribbean is probably the closest match. I hope I can keep the contentment up and the urge to flee my surroundings down.

Happy Hump Day!