WHEN I awoke it was broad daylight. The sun was up. The sky was clear. The air seemed soft and mild. A fine day was beginning.
It did not take me long to come down from my lodging place.
I looked out toward the sea.
To my great wonder, I saw that the ship was now much closer to the shore. The high tide had lifted her off the sand. It had carried her toward the land and left her on a huge rock less than a mile away.
I could see that the good ship stood upright and was firmly wedged into the rock.
The waves had not broken her up, but her masts had been snapped off, and all her rigging was gone.
The sea was quite smooth, and the tide was still going out. Soon the beach was bare, and I could walk a long way out.
I was now within a quarter of a mile of the ship.
As I looked at her, a sad thought came to my mind. For if we had all kept on board when she stuck in the sand, we would now have been safe.
But there was no use in thinking of what might have been.
I waded out as far as I could, and then swam for the ship.
As I came near her, I saw that she was lying high out of the water. The part of the rock that was uncovered rose steep and straight into the air. There was no place for me to set my feet.
I swam round the ship twice. How could I ever climb up her smooth sides?
I was about to give up, when I saw a small piece of rope hanging down from the deck. It reached almost to the water. How strange that I did not see it at first!
I seized hold of the rope, and climbed hand over hand to the deck.
I went into the ship's cabin. I looked all through the unlucky vessel.