Neddy Merrill's Life Exposed In The Swimmer

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In “The Swimmer” Neddy Merrill does not realize that as he attempts to swim across the county, his life is slipping away. A trip home through neighborhood pools ends up being a journey through many years of Neddy Merrill’s life. He learns that the passing of time is unavoidable, whether or not it is ignored. At the beginning of the story, the storyteller lets us know that Neddy is “far from young,’ yet he does his best to act youthful by sliding down a banister and plunging into a pool. (726) Neddy continues on his adventure across the county and time is passing faster than he knows. Leaves change colors and the air gets colder. Old friends and neighbors are not home when he expects they will be, he undergoes hate from people he’d once hated,…show more content…
Toward the start of the story, Neddy is warm in the daylight, aware of only his own satisfaction and the delights of the day. As he starts his swim, the water and air are of agreeable temperature, and he can walk effectively from pool to pool in his bathing suit. In no time into his trip, a tempest passes, denoting a defining moment in Neddy's arrangements. He is distant from everyone else surprisingly, enduring the tempest in an abandoned gazebo; and when the tempest closes, the glow is no more. He is crisp, and the red and yellow leaves on the ground recommend fall—Neddy feels a "curious pity," the first occasion when he feels something besides bliss. Climate and season are not kind to Neddy from this minute on. He gets colder, sees more indications of fall, and transforms from a strong voyager into a despicable figure by the interstate. Harvest time touches base in full as Neddy completes his excursion, and the last pool he swims in has freezing icy water. As Neddy's upbeat life has found some conclusion, the cycle of seasons has been finished too, and it is clear before the end of the story that Neddy is entering the winter of his
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