Deep Water Summary: In this article, we have provided the chapter Deep Water Summary Class 12 English. Deep water is the 3 chapter of the flamingo book of class 12. Read the following article to better understand the chapter.
Deep Water Summary Class 12 English
Deep water is an extract taken from the autobiography of William Douglas who was a politician and American writer. The author in this chapter talks about his fear of water, how it was deep-seated in his consciousness, and how he overcome it with his sheer determination, courage, and willpower.
He starts the story by saying that since childhood he had the desire to learn to swim. His mother used to warn him about the Yakima river and all its drowning cases and when he was three or four years of age he visited California beach with his father where he was knocked down by a wave. He was not able to breathe and right from this moment, he developed a great fear of water. This fear with his age grew along with him.
At the age of ten or eleven, he decided to overcome this fear and decided to learn swim at Y.M.C.A pool. The pool was 9ft deep on one end and shallow on the other end. He took the help of water wings to learn to swim. It started nicely and the author started learning to swim by watching other kids. This went on when suddenly a misadventure took place.
One day the author was alone in the pool when he was sitting at the edge of the pool waiting for others to come as he was sceptical about going alone in the pool. At that moment a big boy whose physic was strong and built for swimming but he was a bully came, and threw Douglas into the deep side of the pool which was 9 ft. He was frightened but he was not that frightened that he could think what he have to do next now. He thought of a plan that as soon as he will touch the bottom of the pool he would take a jump so that he could protrude out from the water.
But as soon as his feet touched the floor of the pool he was not able to take the jump. It felt like his legs were frozen but he tried again to push himself like a cork. He tried once, twice, thrice but his plan never succeeded and he was struggling to get air. This continuous process made him exhausted, his ribs were tired his legs and body were aching. The author tried to scream for help but no one could listen to him as only water was there surrounding him and the reflection of yellow light made the water more horrifying for the author.
At last, he was feeling that he can’t do anything else and a sense of calmness and peacefulness was spreading over his body. After this, he was fully unconscious. The next thing he remembers is that he was out of the pool vomiting and the boy who had thrown him into the pool was justifying the action that he threw him for fun only. That day when he went to his home he thought that he is now overpowered by his fear of water now. The trauma was so deep-seated in his mind now that years later also this haunted memory of his was so deep that he can’t enjoy canoeing, boating, and swimming. He tried everything to overcome his fear of water but failed miserably.
One October he hired a personal instructor to learn to swim for one hour, five days a week. The instructor used to tie a robe on the waist of Douglas and the second robe or cable was with the instructor which went through an overhead pulley. As soon as the instructor used to loosen the rope and the author went slightest into the water his fear used to overcome him. But gradually his fear subsided when the author used to practice daily. His instructor taught him how to inhale above the water and exhale inside the water. His instructor used to ask him to do only kicking for some time to train his legs.
Piece by piece the author was now fully prepared and used to challenge himself and his skill in lakes and rivers. The author finally realised that now he have fully overcome his fear. And last recites the words of Roosevelt, “All we have to fear is fear itself.” And how this experience has given him the sensation of death and the terror the fear of death can produce and now his will to live grew more intense.