Holidaymakers yesterday witnessed the benefits of sharp eyesight and quick reactions, when one of the ubiquitous beach lifeguards rushed to the rescue of a foreign tourist unable to cope with the rough seas off Legian Beach.
Despite the stunningly beautiful view of sands sparkling in the sun as though scattered with diamond dust and the waves rippling onto shore casting salty dewdrops as the light breeze blew across the shore, all is not perfect in paradise.
Bali is an island of balance, gods and demons abound, and in many places along the coast below the beautiful seascape, a strong rip searches out the unknowing and the careless.
Yesterday, the sea looked tame, the water was shallow and it was all too tempting to play in the waves. However, despite the sea not being particularly deep, the rip was strong and a foreign tourist was knocked off her feet by a deceptively small wave, tumbled again while trying to regain her feet, and sent flying once more, vanishing under the waves. Her partner, struggling himself to stay on his feet, was unable to help her.
Thankfully, in a flash, Nyoman Wirnaya, an ever-alert beach lifeguard, had spotted what was happening and ran out to help. He pulled her up from the waves, steadied her partner and together they carried her ashore, shaken, but with only her confidence damaged.
As Nyoman was in action, at least two other lifeguards were on standby with their surfboards waiting to run out if more help was needed.
“I am just doing my job,” Nyoman said humbly.
Nyoman is part of a four-man lifeguard team assigned by Anantara Seminyak Resort and Spa to keep a watchful eye on the visitors swimming off the stretch of beach facing the luxurious resort.
The team coordinates closely with the government-run lifeguards and other lifeguard teams deployed by hotels and tourism establishments in the area.
“I have a very dedicated team and we all love this job,” the team’s head, Wayan Sudita, said.