I am a Junior in High School. I met the cutest boy from the mainland. He’s really cool and really gorgeous and I’m head over fins in love with him. I think that he just may be THE ONE. Should I tell my parents or not? What do you think I should do?
The first thing you should do is find some cold water to swim in. While he just may be the one you want for a mate, it’s still early to be making your choice and don’t try to argue that feral mermaids choose mates as early as the age of 14. They live under different circumstances than we do here on the island.
Does this mainland boy even know you exist? If he does, is he aware of your background? Mainlanders don’t react well to such revelations at that age.
If he does know about you, what does he plan to do next? Will he join you here on the island or in the Royston enclave? Do you plan to relocate to the mainland in order to be with him?
Let’s assume that he knows about your background and he has decided to join us here on the island. How will he explain his new breakfast drink to his parents? What if his little sister decides to try the juice and likes it? How will he explain to his family that he’s going through some changes?
I know that I’ve asked a lot of questions here, but you need to get all the information you can before you can even think of choosing him. I am not disparaging island/mainland pairings – just look at Penelope Tench – but all too often, these things can end badly for the island girl if action is taken without careful thought.
He may indeed be your future mate and if that is the case, you the two of you can look forward to at least 150 years together. In the long swim, waiting a few years is merely a very brief pause in your quest for a mate. Simply take some time and get all the facts, first.
All the mermaids I know can talk of nothing else but the so-called wedding and what they’re going to wear that day. Do we have to wear anything? Does there even have to be a wedding? Why can’t they have an old-fashioned joining ceremony on the Private Beach and then everyone goes for a swim after its all over?
A bit of history is in order here. Centuries ago when our ancestors lived in the sea full time, there was no such thing as a ‘joining ceremony’. The couple would simply go to their friends and family to announce they’d chosen each other as mates. There might be the additional step which was a sort of ceremonial adoption by each family of their child’s mate but that was the very most which could happen.
When we came ashore on Colony Island, mermaids had their first contact with human wedding customs and the joining ceremony was devised as a substitute. While it was better than nothing, most mermaids still longed for a wedding and some chose human mates in order to have one. This brought its own set of problems which I am loathe to discuss at this moment.
While human ceremonies are often just as simple as our joining ceremonies, there are plenty of couples who will put on their fanciest clothes for the occasion. Those family and friends who choose to celebrate this joyous event with them will also put on their best clothes as well, making sure not to outshine the bride and her mate.
Since all Colony Island mermaids want a wedding of their own – you seem to be the only exception – it is easy to understand why your girlfriends are excited about the upcoming event and what they plan to wear. Since Colony Island’s Finest will be out in force that day, I suggest you wear something – anything – if you plan to attend.
How do you treat Ick? I’ve spent a lot of time in fresh water lately and it has left me with these white spots below the waist.
The Ick is caused by a free swimming ciliated protozoan called Ichthyophthirius multifiliis. The disease itself is known as ichthyophthiriasis and can show up in marine environments as well as fresh water. The most common causes are stress and diet which depresses the efficiency of our immune systems.
While an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, you can help things along by getting rid of all the stress in your life. Bab’s Cut & Curl offers spa-packages and a day of pampering will work wonders, leaving you mellow and relaxed.
Diet is equally important and reducing, or eliminating, junk food from your daily fare is a must. Stick to our traditional foods like sushi and kelp. Even though there are a variety of different kelps, it can nonetheless be a monotonous diet. Try and spice things up by using different sauces.
Our newest resident, Peter Macpherson, has come up with a kelp sauce that is quite tasty. The recipe appeared in The Chronicle several months ago and I’ll ask Maureen to reprint it in the next issue.
Finally, spend as much time as possible in warm water – the warmer, the better.