This question takes me back to my childhood. Like most boys, I was never really fond of taking baths. I remember actually going a full week without one and I didn’t even bat an eye. I also used to think the act of water coming into contact with my skin was good enough to take care of any visible or invisible dirt that I had interacted with. A bath was equal to a swim, even if that swim was in a pond or lake. Water equaled clean. I have since reformed, but with that as a backdrop, I ask the question that many people have probably asked over the years: do those that live in the sea need to take a shower or bath? And to stay on topic for this blog, did Ariel or any of her merfolk feel the need to bathe? Don’t answer to quickly as there are a few angles in which we should review this query.
In the human world, we take showers for many reasons. Obviously cleanliness helps us remove filth from the world we live in. It removes things that we willingly put on our body like make-up, hair product or sunscreen. It helps us eliminate bacteria and other sickness causing agents that attach themselves to our skin. Outside of sanitary concerns, it also helps us from a social perspective keeping our own personal musk from going to far beyond our skin borders. And of course it feels good to take a shower, right?
So I ask again, do you think that Ariel, while in the ocean, ever took a ‘bath?’ I would assume while flipping her fins, she would surely come into contact with something grimey or slimey. Maybe some small sea bacteria would attach themselves to her while she swam around the reef. But we know that a shower would not be possible due to their complete immersion in the liquid. So, did she have specific brushes to scrape off the barnacles? And soap? How would that work? I guess she could use bar soap but you would think it would be hard to get it to apply itself underwater.
And if she had no concept of this human practice, why was she not completely confused by the bath she receives when she becomes a human. Sure the bubble are interesting, but were bubbles really something new to her? Every time a mermaid moved underwater, thousands of bubbles would appear around them. Maybe she was just remembering her till-recent former life and hearing Sebastian’s words echo, ‘we got no troubles, life is the bubbles, under the sea.’
Image Credit —-> deviantart.com