Monday, May 26, 2014

Moon jellies and oil refineries

Because we had an extra day off work this weekend, for Memorial Day, Chris and I packed up too much stuff and the pup, and headed to the Gulf of Mexico via Corpus Christi on Saturday. Talk about an interesting drive. We were staying at a hotel ten minutes from the city and beach, so we had to drive past all the oil refineries and tankers to get to the water. At one point during the drive, there was natural gas burning from a narrow tower, a stationary train, and a huge oil tanker to my right; the ocean, lined with wind turbines, was to my left. The turbine blades are exported from the same stretch of road, and together: the beach, refineries, train, and turbines made for a strange drive. The fact that my husband insisted on listening to instrumental metal as we drove made it all the eerier.

We made it to the beach though. Ahti saw the ocean for the first time, and was pretty excited. She dug and rolled around in the sand, chased waves, and batted at seaweed.

Chris and I took turns hanging on to her as the other went into the ocean. (We had to do this after she tried to drink the ocean water, which isn't great for dogs.) And just as I was about to go out into the water again, we saw this guy (below), along with a less formed clear jellyfish friend of his. From a little Internet research, I've concluded he's a moon jelly (aurelia aurita), which means he's pretty common. The visible shamrocks are his gonads (I had to look that up). The fact that jellyfish function without a brain, lungs, or heart is amazing, and I had never seen one so close. I'm glad I didn't have to pee on my husband or have him pee on me (that was in an episode of Friends (below), and I've relived enough sitcom-like scenarios to suit me a while). 

After we dropped Ahti off, we walked the danger zone, down a levy in the ocean. The wind, as I said, was intense, so it didn't take us long to do an about-face and head back to find food. Today, on Memorial Day proper, we're at home, and the rain outside is intense. There are flood warnings in San Antonio, so I feel bad for those of you around these parts who were planning to have a cookout. We made it back from the beach just in time. I often wonder what it would be like to live in a beach town, perhaps not that much different. I do know I'd love to sit out there by the ocean day in and day out, writing away as the waves kiss my feet. Then again, I'm a redhead, so it's probably best I don't. 

Happy Memorial Day! Gratitude to all those who served honorably.

I'll post about writing next week. For now, I'm going to use the rainy day as an excuse to write away.... 


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