Maracas Bay, Trinidad and Tobago - Colin Ojah-Maharaj
My name is Colin Ojah-Maharaj and I live in Milton, Ontario. My water body is actually Maracas Bay in Trinidad and Tobago.
I was 18 and you know you think you’re invincible. Maracas Bay is known to have a pretty strong undertow at high tide. So we’re there after dinner and I’m still running around in the water and waves are coming in big but it’s like oh this is so awesome, this is so much fun. I’m like getting slammed by waves and whatever. I’m walking back out, I’m in water probably knee-deep. I turn my back and kind of waving to the shore, “Look how awesome I am”. A wave slams me right in the back. I face plant into the sand, I get dragged back I don’t know how far. It felt like it was all of 2 seconds. I managed to sort of struggle and stand up and when I stood up I was neck deep in water. It felt like I was 50 m from where I was, it was so far back.
At that point, I stood there like “Oh my god”, and I realized the power of the ocean. And that’s where I was like, swimming or no swimming….being 18, being in the prime of your life, it doesn’t matter because if the ocean is gonna take you, it’s gonna take it. Later I learned that that beach is notorious for a handful of deaths related to undertow like that every year. Since that point, every time I’ve gone back I’ve been very, very respectful of the waters.