By Liana Jacob
THIS LITTLE MERMAN was inspired by his favourite childhood movie that he has spent over 1,120 British pounds for a custom-made tail which he uses to swim in his own pool.
Stunning shots show college student, Christian Riel (24), relaxing in a tub filled to the brim with foam in his golden tail and another shows his streamlined body gliding through the glistening ocean.
Further photos show him looking sultry while lying in a grassy patch with his hand running through his hair and another showing his toned back as he crashes the waves, waving his arms victoriously in the air.
Christian, who lives in Florida, USA, fell in love with the ocean and becoming a merman after he first watched Disney’s The Little Mermaid when he was a child.
“My favourite movie when I was a kid was Disney’s The Little Mermaid. That’s the time when I discovered my love for the ocean and the sea,” Christian said.
“I’ve lived in Florida for two years and drove out to the ocean whenever I had the time. I just live sitting by the shore and love swimming in the salty sea water.
“About two years ago, I found some mermaid/merman Instagram pages and that’s when I realised I want to be a merman, too.
“I ordered my very first silicone tail by the mertailor.com by Eric Ducharme. I visited his showroom in Crystal River, Florida, in September 2017 and got measured and then ordered my tail. My custom-made tail was about £1,130 ($1,600) including taxes and shipping.
“I love the water and I love swimming with and without a tail. Wearing a tail makes you so much faster and it’s just an awesome feeling of liberty.
“One guy said he’s never seen a mermMAN before but why not? He was kind of surprised that there are male merpeople.
“Public pools don’t allow regular fins so they would not allow mermaid tails but I do have my own pool and I love to swim in lakes and in the ocean.”
In his spare time, Christian tends to his horses on his ranch and has plans to teach at a primary school.
Reactions from the public have motivated him even further to pursue a living as a merman, but it has also caused some discomfort wearing the tail and swimming with it.
“I suffer from pain in my ankles when wearing my tail longer than an hour and after a couple of hours swimming my eye sight gets blurry because of salty sea water or chloride,” he said.
“I’m just happy that all my friends and family love me being a fish and love to go swimming to whatever beaches with me and enjoy taking one hundred pictures of me as a creature from the deep.
“I love my life; not just because I love being a merman more because I always do what I want to do and what I love to do. I guess that’s why I’m such a happy fish.
“Most people are super sweet, interested and want to take pictures. I’ve never had to deal with any negative reaction.”
For more information visit: https://www.instagram.com/merman_chris/