Many years ago a Japanese freight hauler in the middle of the Pacific Ocean had a strange encounter indeed. Miles from everywhere, they saw a dot several hundred yards off the port bow. Turning to port, they came quickly upon a small Chinese man in a loose robe, hovering in a lotus sitting position about four feet above the water. His eyes were closed. One of the men called out to him, and he opened his eyes and smiled up at them. They gestured to the man that he could come aboard, but he just smiled and waved them off, indicating that he was fine just where he was. They implored him nonverbally to board, but he politly refused, closing his eyes again. It was with great inner conflict that they went on their way, leaving the man there in the middle of the giant ocean.
"Opening my eyes, grandson, I saw a giant ship had come upon me while I was thinking. Quite a surprise, that was. Then men aboard, foreigners, called out to me. They were concerned for me, I think, and wanted me to join them. They believed I needed rescue. It took some persuading to get them to leave me be, but they finally left. Good men, those were, to have such a care for a stranger. I was troubled greatly that I might have caused them distress, but I soon put that out of my mind. I concentrated again on the wind, on the soft sound of the movement of the waves in the deep water."
"How did you get there, grandfather? How did you get back?" The boy wanted to believe his grandfather, but he was having trouble.
"So many questions. My goodness. Some of these are deep things, grandson, serious things. Too much for bedtime. Goodnight, grandson."
In his dreams the boy was a fish, speeding through deep, cool water. He could feel the freedom and smoothness of movement. He dove deep and then, turning back, shot toward the surface. Breaking through, he left a giant arc of water drops behind him as he leapt high and landed, softly, in the lap of a kind old man. The old man laughed at him, patted his head gently, and tossed him back into the water to play some more.
Hello, friends. How are you today?