On a stroll along the beach after school let out for the day, I slowed to observe a group of teens gathering in a circle.
“Stay back!” one teenage boy shouted at the others moving closer to look at something partially submerged in the sand.
“Is it a jellyfish?” asked a pudgy adolescent girl.
“Naw, there’s only one, and everyone knows that jellyfish swim in schools, especially this late in the summer when they migrate.”
“Eeww, it’s wiggling. Touch it and see what it does,” she suggested and tucked her toes neatly together, but seemed more impressed with the brainy boy than the sea animal.
“Not me,” the discoverer faced the young man who’d just arrived beside him, “ but you’re wearing shoes, so you give it a push.”
The newcomer took a step back, but a third boy announced with authority, “Stand over here with me,” as he drew a straight line in the sand with his big toe and clapped his hands three times, “because if you stand behind this enchanted line, it can’t get you.”
The girl hopped behind the mark, then let out a scream when the translucent, white head of the creature rose two feet tall and spewed slime as it lunged across the intended line of protection at their row of bare feet.
I shook my head knowing it takes a curved line to block any creature born of the sharply angled waves that fight wild autumnal temperature swings.