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Ooooh, barracuda!

June 30, 2010

There are a lot of great thing coming up in the near future. I am moving (yay!), I am going to New York City/Brooklyn (yay!), and I am going to the aquarium (FUCK YES!).

Does anyone love the aquarium as much as I do? Nope, probably not. I freaken love he aquarium more than I could ever put into words.

Irony: i HATE the ocean

No, not the beach. Just the ocean. I don’t like sharing something with anything that isn’t human. Aka seaweed. Aka fish. Aka SHARKS. Don’t even get me started on sharks because I probably won’t sleep tonight. I have an irrational fear of sharks and I sometimes get scared when I shower because I think a killer shark is going to come jumping through my drain. I already said it was an irrational fear. Don’t judge me.

It is very rare that you will find me in water anywhere above my knees. Its just a thing.

One time my family convinced me to go snorkeling in St Thomas. Reluctantly I suited up and swam around looking at the all the nemo fish. I had lifted my head up just for a second and I heard some kid yell “DAD! DID YOU SEE THE TEETH ON THAT BARRACUDA?” All of a sudden I was on the beach choking on water. I have no idea how I went from being an 1/8th of a mile off the shore to being sprawled out on the beach having a panic attack.

When I was little, my cousins and I used to spend our summers in Prince Edward Island. We’d spend all day on the beach and come back to our grandmothers house covered in sunburned and covered in sand.

One day, after our 12th day in a row at the beach, we got insanely bored. We had played in the waves, we had climbed on all of the big rocks, we had collected 2398472938472983432 shells, and we had made more sand castles then I care to remember. We were bored.

Now, I remember the beaches to be really nice in PEI. There weren’t a lot of rocks in the sand, there was only seaweed during low tide, and they were never crowded. The one terrible thing I can remember, were the jellyfish. They were EVERYWHERE. Not like…deadly ones or anything. Just fist sized clear and purple jellyfish washed on the shore or floating near the shore line. We avoided them like the plague because, HELLO- jelly fish sting. And that sucks.

That day, we had  taken a walk and I stepped on a biggish clear jellyfish. I immediately started freaking out because I thought it was going to start stinging. It never did. We were confused. So we all started poking the jellyfish- first with a stick and then with our toes and fingers once we got a little braver. I figured it was dead and thats why it wasn’t stinging us. Pretty logical. We found more on the beach which we poked and prodded. We even got brave enough to touch some in the water, but we NEVER got stung. We also realized that these smaller clear jellyfish did not have any tentacles while the bigger purple ones did. After awhile, we all contemplated what this meant. Little gooey beings + no danger + awesome= JELLYFISH FIGHTS.

totally serious.

We ran back to the spot on the beach and grabbed as many buckets and pails we could carry and started loading them up with jellys. We then staked our spots on the beach. I was lucky enough to have a rock barrier around me to keep out enemy attacks.

The war began.

I wish I knew what the surrounding families on the beach thought of us. Here we were, 7-10 years old with bathing suits hanging off our prepubescent bodies throwing marine creatures at one another all along the beach. AND why didn’t our parents stop us? Seriously. SERIOUSLY.

We had wars that lasted days. No one really lost or won. Unless you count our parents and Gramma who had to deal with us coming home sunburned, sandy, AND with jellyfish stuck to our bathing suits and hair. They definitely lost. Whateves.

A few years later, we grew out of the jellywars. And by grew out of them, I mean my cousins and I were very rarely in PEI at the same time anymore. One year, my two cousins who were sisters and I were staying at the house together. This  time, we really concentrated on playing in the waves and such.

One day, we were swimming and having fun in the ocean. I was running around with my goggles on because I suck and can’t open my eyes under water. We were riding into shore with the waves and trying to avoid all of the seaweed and jellyfish that were floating everywhere. This one HUGE wave came in and I could see the dark spots in water, meaning either seaweed or jellys. As it crashed down, I opened my eyes and I saw one of my cousins a few feet ahead of me swimming towards this big dark spot.

During the next 3 seconds I asked myself “what is that? Is that seaweed? Is it just the water? Is it a jellyfish? Oh shit, its a jellyfish. OH SHIT”

I then witnessed her swimming face first into the biggest jellyfish I have ever seen in my life and just brushed it aside with her hand. We all quietly stood up where we were. My cousin had tentacles in her hair, stuck in her bracelets, and on her face.

My dear cousin’s face was stung by a jellyfish.
I couldn’t believe it.
I had never seen anything like it.

it blew up to the size of a beach ball in under 5 minutes.

I am pretty sure thats when I realized my fear of sea creatures. Coincidently, this is one of the last times I swam in ocean water that went above my knees.

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